Celebrating Indigenous History Month and Pride Month in Queen’s Health Sciences
From an Indigenous healthcare learning resource to a Positive Space Challenge, find out how Queen’s Health Sciences is recognizing both National Indigenous History Month and Pride Month.
June is a time to celebrate the history, diversity, and contributions of Canadians who are Indigenous as well as members of the 2SLGBTQIA+ community.
Pride Month began in 1970 in New York City, where 2SLGBTQIA+ activists organized a march on the anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, a spontaneous demonstration in response to a police raid on the Stonewall Inn. Canada also has a rich history of 2SLGBTQIA+ activism, with the notable gay rights protests taking place as early as 1971. Over the years, these demonstrations have evolved into a month of festivals and celebrations across the world.
National Indigenous History Month was established in 2009 to recognize the First Nations, Inuit and Métis people who have helped shape Canadian history, as well as celebrate Indigenous culture and heritage. National Indigenous Peoples Day falls annually on June 21.
These national Indigenous celebrations come just over a year after the discovery of the unmarked graves of children at Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc. The identification of additional burial locations around Canada continue to remind us of the horrifying impact of the country’s residential school system on Indigenous peoples. The inequities, intergenerational trauma and health outcome disparities that were perpetuated by this system continue today, affecting Indigenous peoples across the country.
QHS is committed to supporting Indigenous and 2SLGBTQIA+ faculty, staff, and learners. We encourage everyone in the faculty to show their support by engaging with the activities, stories, resources, and digital content that we will be sharing throughout the month. Highlights include:
Positive Space Challenge: QHS is issuing a challenge to all faculty and staff to complete the university’s Positive Space training. This two-part training familiarizes participants with queer issues, local resources, forms of discrimination and harassment, and discrimination policies. There are two stages: a self-paced course (Positive Space Part 1)) and a virtual course (Positive Space Part 2) – which is being offered twice in June (June 16, 2:30 pm – 4:00 pm; and June 21, 9:30 am – 11:00 am). Participants receive positive space stickers for their work, living spaces, and personal belongings. These training sessions can help serve as a catalyst for ongoing action – as we look to find ways to collectively create safe spaces and support and celebrate the gender and sexual diversity on our campus all year long. Learn more about the Positive Space program in this video.
Feature stories: Throughout the month, you will find new features on the QHS homepage and our digital channels highlighting the achievements of our Indigenous and 2SLGBTQIA+ faculty and learners, including:
- June 1 - A Call to Action: Queen’s launches new Indigenous healthcare and practice resource for students. The digital tool covers seven key themes – including culturally safe healthcare and healthcare rights – and features original artwork by Indigenous artists. Spurred by the federal Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action on healthcare education, a community-led collaborative team, including Queen’s faculty, students and alumni, came together to create the tool.
- June 2 - Taking Pride in the Curriculum: Student researchers are working to enhance 2SLGBTQIA+ representation in Queen's MD pre-clerkship curriculum. Led by the QueerMed committee, this project’s goal is to provide recommendations based on evidence and lived experiences of 2SLGBTQIA+ students that will meaningfully improve the curriculum – and inform concrete recommendations for the rest of QHS. The curriculum review is among the 2022 EDIIA Studentship Projects that aim to transform QHS into a more diverse and inclusive community.
- June 9 (Vitals) - 12 Questions with Ian Burns, Kingston Pride Chair and Audit Team Lead at Canadian Cancer Trials Group.
Social Media: Keep an eye on QHS’s Twitter, Facebook and Instagram channels throughout June as we explore resources and stories related to Indigenous and 2SLGBTQIA+ excellence. Also keep an eye out for video spotlights featuring students from Indigenous Learners of Health Sciences
Zoom Backgrounds: Show your support for the LGBTQIA2S+ community on Teams and on Zoom by using a Pride-themed virtual backdrop.
How to upload a new background image: Zoom Instructions | Teams Instructions
**When you upload your new background into Zoom or Teams the images may appear mirrored(or flipped backwards) to you. However they will show correctly to the other attendees in your virtual meeting.
- The Queen's University Association for Queer Employee's (QUAQE) Employee Resource Group
- Check out this Queen’s University Library guide for LGBTQ health resources