This focus area supports the advancement of several different communities, including women and 2SLGBTQIA+ folks. The YMCA of Greater Toronto understands that the term “women” includes cisgender and transgender women. To be inclusive and equitable as we move forward, we must work to address inequities supported by sexist policies and practices, both internally and in communities. Our work and thinking on gender extends beyond the binary of men and women, taking into account the existence, experiences and concerns of Two-Spirit, transgender and non-binary folks, as well as other gender-non-conforming identities denoted in the 2SLGBTQIA+ acronym and beyond.
To demonstrate the nuance and care required to approach gender and sexual diversity, our work in this area will also include recognition of discrimination towards sexualities beyond heterosexuality such as gay, lesbian, bisexual and asexual, and beyond the biological male-female binary, too – acknowledging intersex folks. These communities are not homogenous, and need to be understood as having distinct needs, with a consideration that knowledge and terminology about gender and sexual diversity is ever evolving. The 2SLGBTQIA+ acronym is not an exhaustive list of identities, and the Y is open to learning and changing as we work with communities.
An example of equity programming designed and offered specifically for 2SLGBTQIA+ communities by the Y is our YMCA Sprott House.