Santé Trans Health

The Trans Health Network works to promote health and social justice for Trans people in Quebec. We have a holistic understanding of health that includes unequivocal access for all trans people to healthcare, housing, employment and community. We recognize the daily violence and barriers to access faced by trans people as a systemic problem, linked by multiple forms of oppression, and to which we can best respond with collective action. We strive to create links between community organizations that work with trans communities and the medical/social services that trans people are seeking to access. We strive to be accountable to the different communities we belong to and work with, and we aim to be proactive, rather than reactive, while also responding to needs that exist and arise.

The Trans Health Network fulfills its mandate by:
1. Working within a harm-reductive framework which promotes self-determination and empowerment – we believe this means equipping people with knowledge and resources to identify and pursue different options, and offering non-judgmental support in the decisions they make. We do this through providing and facilitating access to resources such as clean needles and gear, safer sex items, and items specifically related to gender expression, as well as distributing information, providing peer-based support, giving referrals, and promoting a culture of self-advocacy

2. Ensuring that underrepresented trans voices are present in major decisions about healthcare and public policy through lobbying the government, collaborating with similarly mandated organizations and acting as a watchdog during policy-making processes.

3. Working with healthcare and social service providers in order to increase their capacity to adequately and sensitively provide necessary care and services for trans people. This involves providing informational materials and trainings, as well as supporting the establishment of a network amongst allied providers

4. Creating and promoting knowledge and resources about trans health – this includes developing and distributing accessible print and electronic materials (website, referrals database, etc.) in multiple languages at diverse points of access (clinics, bars, community organizations), participating in strategic, action-based research initiatives, and educating healthcare and social service providers, as well as the greater public (by way of media, public forums, etc), about the realities and needs of trans people.

5. Maintaining a presence in community events – including conferences, meetings and speakers` panels.

6. Prioritizing access and advocacy to and for trans people who are otherwise rejected from traditional healthcare and other support systems – this includes people who are low-income, people of colour, sex workers, youth, people with disabilities, drug users, people who are non-status and immigrants, people who are seropositive, and people who are, or have been, incarcerated.

7. Solidifying our presence as a network, as a community resource and as a political force – that is, employing strategies in order to ensure the visibility, effectiveness, and long-term sustainability of our work.

8. Remembering our past and looking towards our future – this means honouring the lives and work of trans elders, and doing all we can to build a just society free from violence and oppression in which trans youth can grow up.

9. Working in solidarity with and in support of trans people locally and internationally in the fight for social justice.

A word on ‘Trans’
*The THN understands that trans communities are diverse in terms of access to resources, history, composition (race, class, status, etc), as well as the terminology used to describe oneself. Throughout our mandate, we use the word ‘Trans’ in a rather simplistic fashion to refer to people who identify as Trans(s)exual, Transgender, Genderqueer, Two-Spirit trans, Transvestite/Cross-dresser, and Gender Non-Conforming as well as to refer to people who are questioning their gender. At the same time, we know that Trans people have diverse needs and priorities, and as such, aim to honour and respect many different approaches to working within Trans communities. Ultimately, we support the right for people to self-determine and self-identify.

Its core membership is currently composed of five organizations:

The 2110 Centre for Gender Advocacy 

Stella 

Project 10

ASTT(e)Q 

L’aide aux transsexuel(le)s du Québec