Budget 2019 provided some unprecedented commitments to building up local capacities for LGBTQ2 community-level work from coast to coast to coast:
- $20M over two years in capacity-building and community-level work for LGBTQ2 service organizations in Canada, a commitment that will truly change and save lives
- The creation of a Canadian Experiences Fund that directly supports LGBTQ2 tourism sectors in Canada and builds on the mission to promote the rights of LGBTQ2 communities internationally
- In an ongoing commitment to reducing barriers and supporting non-discriminatory approaches to blood donation, Budget 2019 includes an additional $2.4M for additional research specific to reducing obstacles for plasma donation. This will support crucial research and treatment for patients with leukemia and many other illnesses.
- Canadian LGBTQ2 communities face disproportionately higher rates of suicide and suicide-related thoughts. Budget 2019 proposes to provide $25M over 5 years, starting with $5M per year, to create a pan-Canadian suicide prevention service with bilingual, 24/7 support from trained responders.
Budget 2019 provided some incredible injections for Canada’s LGBTQ2 communities and organizations. More specifically, Canadian Heritage finds increased funding for local Pride festivals:
- The Building Communities through Arts and Heritage program supports important local festivals, including Pride festivals, across the country
- Budget 2019 will invest an additional $7M per year over two years for local festivals, a 50% increase in funding for festival organizers
- We heard feedback that the program was heavily oversubscribed and this was negatively impacting festival organizers’ ability to plan and execute, and ultimately impacting festival outcomes
- This increased funding will also allow the program to support a greater number of Prides and other local, community-based festivals that feature local and emerging Canadian artists
These investments in LGBTQ2 communities in Canada will change and save lives, and underscore’s this Government’s commitment to equality and human rights for all Canadians.