March 31 marks the International Transgender Day of Visibility, a day to celebrate trans, two-spirit, & non-binary folks and their dynamic contributions to our communities. It’s a time to stand united against transphobia and discrimination and create safe, inclusive & respectful spaces where trans individuals feel safe to live visible and authentic lives.

Over the past few years, we’ve seen a troubling rise of hatred and discrimination against the transgender and LGBTQ2SIA+ communities. In Canada, police-reported hate crimes based on sexual orientation and gender identity rose nearly 60 per cent between 2019 and 2021. And across the world we’ve seen discriminatory legislation, harmful rhetoric and violence. This is unacceptable and we can and must do better.

So this Transgender Day of Visibility, we encourage members of U of G to learn more about creating safe and inclusive environments for our Trans and other LGBTQ2SIA+ community members and to take a moment to think about how to be an ally to those needing our support. When members of our community face hatred and discrimination, it affects us all. To learn about how you can be an ally to members of our Trans community check out the following DHR resources:

  • Positive Space Project – This module increases awareness of LGBTQ2SIA+ issues on campus and transform the University of Guelph into a more welcoming environment for LGBTQ2SIA+ faculty, staff, and students. Participants will explore the importance of inclusive language, pronouns, allyship, and resources to continue their learning journey.
  • Building Community: Introduction to Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion – This free eHandbook provides readers with the skills and tools they need to understand key EDI and anti-oppression concepts and become strong advocates for social justice and systemic change. The eHandbook explores topics like privilege, intersectional oppression, unconscious bias, inclusive language, and allyship, while deepening readers’ understanding and knowledge of EDI.
  • Introduction to Human Rights – This module guides participants through the Ontario Human Rights Code and the University of Guelph’s Human Rights Policy and Procedures. It explores how relevant laws and university policies define important concepts like discrimination, harassment, accommodation and undue hardship. It provides participants with the knowledge to strengthen human rights at U of G and access necessary supports. It highlights our individual responsibilities when it comes to human rights on campus, and gives tips on how to access support through the University’s Human Rights Policies and Procedures.

It takes all of us to create a community where everyone has a sense of belonging. This Transgender Day of Visibility, think about how you can help make our campus a welcoming place for all members of the and LGBTQ2SIA+ community.