To the trans community on campus

To the trans community on campus

The last couple of days have been particularly intense. The McGill Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism’s decision to disregard your needs and to put your rights up for debate was not only insensitive, it was unacceptable. SSMU supports students and groups that have mobilized to make their voices heard and stand together for a more inclusive university. Queer McGill, the Trans Patients Union, RadLaw, and everyone else involved, thank you! 

SSMU’s Gender Equity position states that the experiences of trans and queer people must be affirmed, supported, and listened to. We want to assure you: SSMU has heard you!  The needs you have voiced once again in the last couple days will be a priority in our advocacy towards the administration. 

It is clear to us that remaining neutral in the face of social injustices is choosing the side of the oppressor. Students are demanding better. Not only do they not want their rights to be up for debate, they want accountability, they want better trans health care, mental health support and they want to be able to change their name more easily. 

SSMU has become aware that McGill is currently working on an Academic Freedom Policy. We are conscious of the impacts that this policy could have on students, as it could be used as a justification for discriminatory discourse on campus. As such, we intend to heavily advocate for student perspective on the issue. The recent events show us that there is strong mobilization within the student body to defend the rights of marginalized and vulnerable communities. 

As individuals in positions of power, McGill administrators “should be especially active in pursuing opportunities to educate themselves to foster an inclusive environment for non-cisgender and non-heterosexual individuals.” We will therefore continue to advocate and continue to support students mobilizing. 

To those who wish to engage in the struggle, we’re always happy to lend a megaphone, share open letters and print posters. We will continue to support you in any way you need. Our door is always open. Let us know what you want to do next!

You can email external@ssmu.ca for mobilization needs and ua@ssmu.ca for advocacy needs. 

If you need support, here are some resources on and off campus:

 

In solidarity,

The SSMU Executives 

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