Last weekend I had the privilige of attending the Trans Health Advocacy Summit in London Ontario. The summit brought together trans people and allies from across the province to discuss advocacy and health for trans people. The weekend was quite full and covered many topics.
Part of the weekend was spent with the people in each region getting together in small groups to discuss what the situation is across the province. Most of the activity, which probably isn’t a surprise to many, is happening in Toronto.
What particularly struck me is how much of the work being done, particularly in areas of advocacy and support is being done in isolation. We keep reinventing the wheel rather than finding out what others are doing and adapting it to meet current needs.t Part of the reason for this is lack of good communication. People in the different regions across Ontario don’t know what is being done elsewhere. Within the regions communication within the ‘trans community’ is often lacking with a number of different groups each doing their own thing. Another part of the problem is that we are not a cohesive community. We have different groups each doing their own thing, interpersonal conflicts, and rivalries and conflicts between groups.
Moving forward we – those of us in the ‘trans community’ – have the challenge of overcoming the differences that divide us and instead work to find common ground and share resources, avoid reinventing the wheel, and working towards improving the situation for trans people across the province.