Sexuality

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Diversity Topics
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Contents

Introduction

Scouts Canada does not discriminate for reasons of sexual orientation or gender identity BP&P. As such, leaders who may or may not have very much experience or knowledge in the area of sexual orientation or gender identity issues may find themselves facing a situation in which they need to confront them, either from youth participants or adult volunteers. This page contains resources that may be useful not only in approaching these issues properly and respectfully, but also in demonstrating Scouting's solidarity with sexual minority communities of Canadians.

Supporting Young LGBT2Q Scouts

Adult volunteers as persons in positions of trust with our youth. As such, they may find themselves in a situation where a LGBT2Q youth is disclosing their sexual orientation in confidence. The young person is likely to be very nervous about speaking to someone about their sexual orientation. There are a number of things you need to consider when a young person approaches you.

  • Listen! If it is not appropriate to discuss the matter there and then, be sure to fix a time that is convenient so that the young person knows when they can discuss the matter with you.
  • Make sure that you are talking in the correct environment. Conversations should be confidential but with other adults within hearing or sight.
  • MOST IMPORTANTLY: re-assure them that it is OK to be LGBT2Q and a Scout.

Be sure to remember to conduct conversation with young people in accordance with Scouts Canada's diversity policy. If you are uncomfortable to talk about this subject with the young person concerned, offer the young person details of a relevant organization in their area who are qualified to discuss and support the matter appropriately. (See Resources Below)

Additional Resources

Definitions / Glossary

"LGBT2Q" is an acronym referring to various communities of sexual minorities in our society. Other forms of this acronym may be seen.

  • L = Lesbian: A woman who is sexually attracted to other women.
  • G = Gay: a person who is sexually attracted to someone of the same sex, more commonly refers to men.
  • B = Bi-sexual: a person who is sexually attracted to both men and women.
  • T = Transgender: Appearing as, wishing to be considered as, or having undergone surgery to become a member of the opposite sex.
  • 2 = 2-Spirited: A term that describes indigenous North Americans who fulfill one of the many mixed gender roles found traditionally among Canadian First-nations indigenous groups.
  • Q = Questioning: a term used to refer to people who are exploring their gender, sexual identity and, sexual orientation.

Other Terms

  • Homophobic: Fear of or contempt for Lesbians or Gay men.
  • Sexual Orientation: The directions of a person's sex towards a person of the same, opposite, or both sexes.
  • Sexual Status: The position relative to others relating to characteristics of Sex, including a person's sexual orientation.
  • Straight: A person who is sexually attracted to the opposite sex.
  • Genderqueer: A term used to describe gender identities other than man and woman. People who identify as Genderqueer may think of themselves as being both man and woman or as being neither man nor woman and therefore falling completely outside the gender binary.
  • Hijra: In the culture of South Asia, hijras are physiological males who adopt feminine gender identity.
  • Intersex: Refers to intermediate or atypical combinations of physical features that usually distinguish female from male. An intersex individual may have biological characteristics of both the male and the female sexes.