Advocacy Means Fighting For Our Rights

Individual advocacy includes challenging decisions that deny a person the things they are legally entitled to -- protection from discrimination, access to social assistance and health care, fair treatment by the justice system, etc. Many member groups have volunteer advocates who can help trans people and family members find the help they need, and to build support for individuals who are being unfairly treated. Resources for individual advocacy are listed at the link at the bottom of this page.

Advocacy is not only about individual cases of discrimination: it can also involve efforts to change the systemic mistreatment of trans people and loved ones. Global advocacy includes lobbying organizations, institutions, and various levels of government to change their rules and regulations that deny trans people and their loved ones full economic, political, and legal rights.

Individual Advocacy

Are you being treated unfairly by someone in a position of power - a landlord, welfare worker, employer, doctor, teacher, police officer, etc. - or do you know someone else who is? Many of TAS' Member Groups have volunteer advocates who can help you get information about your rights, help you assert them for yourself or someone else, and build support so you're not dealing with this alone. Below are some web and print resources written by BC-based advocacy organizations that may also be helpful.

We encourage all those who self-identify as trans,those who are trans-allies, professionals, significant others, family members, and friends, to join and help build a broad-based organization that is representative of the diversity of transgendered communities.

52 Things You Can Do for Transgender Equality

52 Things You Can Do for Transgender Equality was the conception of 'National Center for Transgender Equality' in Washington, DC.. With their permission we have reworded it to apply to Canadians.

#1: Take a Trans Person to Lunch

#2: Ask your library to carry books that deal positively with trans people

#3: Attend an anti-racism training and put into practice what you learn

#4: Run for Office

#5: Invite your mayor or other elected official to address a trans group or town meeting

#6: Plan an Art Show of Works by Trans Artists

#7: Create and publicize a calendar of local events and encourage people to attend them

#8: Start an online community or a blog that deals with an issue that is important to you

#9: Change the Policy of an Organization You Belong To

#10: Donate money to an organization providing direct services for transgender people

#11: Hold a workshop on how to effectively advocate for yourself when seeking medical care or therapy

#12: Ask Your Local Film Festival to Show Trans Themed Movies and then Go See Them

#13: Support the Day of Silence

#14: Preach or speak at a local community of faith, such as a synagogue, church or mosque

#15: Adopt a Highway

#16: Hold a Trans Pride event in your community

#17: March as a trans contingent in the Gay Pride Parade in Vancouver, Victoria, Surrey, Kelowna...

#18: Educate a local homeless shelter about how to be trans inclusive

#19: Pass a non-discrimination ordinance in your community

#20: Visit the offices of your Member of the British Columbia and Legislature Member of Parliament, educate them about trans issues and remind them you are a constituent who votes

#21: Start a local support or education group

#22: Volunteer with an LGBT Advocacy group

#23: Start a Speakers' Bureau

#24: Break a Gender Rule

#25: Make a Restroom More Accessible to Trans People

#26: Locate Support Services

#27: Collaborate with another group on a community project or social event.

#28: Work to Pass a Nondiscrimination Policy at Your Workplace

#29: Connect with PFLAG!

#30 Write a regular column for a publication

#31: Plan to Come out on National Coming Out Day on October 11

#32: Register New Voters!

#33: Fund Scholarships!

#34: Programs for Transgender Youth

#36 Get involved in the political process: Volunteer for a Candidate

#37 Plan and conduct a Day of Remembrance event

#38 Support or create a radio show or podcast

#39 Hold a House Party for TAS or another trans organization

#40 Make Jails Safer for Trans People

#41 Hold a Job Fair

#42 Support a Drag Community Event

#43 Engage Media Coverage of Transgender Issues

#44 Conduct a Community Needs Assessment

#45 Vote!

#46 Start a discussion group on gender related books

#47 Respond to Alerts from Other Organizations

#48 Collect and share stories of discrimination

#49 Set up a training in a hospital, nursing or medical school

#50 Write an op-ed

#51 Help an LGBT organization become more transgender friendly

#52 Make a New Year's Resolution for Transgender Equality

Trans Alliance Society's
working definition
of "Trans"

Trans refers to anyone who has a gender identity; may it be the medical or psychological model, that is different than their birth sex, and/or expresses their gender in ways that contravene societal expectations of the range of possibilities for men and women.

This may include people who self-identify as transgendered, intersex, Two Spirit, crossdressers, transsexuals, bi-gendered, pan-gendered, genderqueer, androgynous, third gender, female and male impersonators, and drag kings/queens, as well as people whose perceived gender or anatomic sex may conflict with their gender expression (such as masculine-appearing women and feminine-appearing men).

For more information on how TAS works, please check out our Constitution & Bylaws.

Community Spotlight

The Centre provides support, health and social services, and public education for the well being of lesbians, gay men, transgender and bisexual people and their allies in Vancouver and throughout BC. The Centre is committed to building pride and acceptance of diversity and to mitigating the impact of homophobia, heterosexism, trans phobia and biphobia.

*Distress Line Numbers*
7:00 p.m. - 10:00 p.m.
Vancouver & Lower Mainland
604 684-6869

Throughout British Columbia
1-800-566-1170 (Toll Free)
-BC Crisis Line-

Greater Vancouver

1-800-SUICIDE (784-2433)