To counter the devastating effects of homophobia, the Québec Alliance for Queer Youth (QAQY), in collaboration with AlterHeros.com, has created the very first Declaration of the Allies. This new tool will allow those concerned by the obstacles faced by queer youth to come out of the closet and become an ally.
A national tool
The project began to take shape in August 2002 when AlterHeros.com created Join the Troop, a unique tool to help queer youth break out of their isolation.
“I saw the impact that Join the Troop had. In two years, more than 600 people had joined. It was very encouraging! That’s when I got the idea of developing our tool on a national level. After discussing it with my team and QAQY administrators, we decided to suggest the idea to the association’s members,” said Marc-Olivier Ouellet, President of AlterHeros.com.
And so, last fall 2004, during the annual assembly, the community organizations, student associations, and community organization projects, all QAQY members, adopted the Declaration of the Allies.
The association’s members also agreed to use the tool in their own activities so that more and more people would join the QAQY allies’ network.
In support of queer youth
Many young people today still have difficulty accepting themselves as queer, especially when they live in rural areas, far from urban centres. The negative connotation that goes along with being homosexual remains very present.
“Young people still feel a lot of pressure to conform to the heterosexual norm. They ask themselves: ‘ Am I the only one who feels this way?’” explained François Paquette, QAQY liaison officer.
“With this tool, we want to show young people in need that there is a vast network of allies fighting homophobia,” added Hugo Valiquette, President of the association.
Through AlterHeros.com, all individuals actively participating in the fight against homophobia in Québec are invited to come out of the shadows. All they need to do is sign the declaration by clicking here!
The QAQY is a non profit organization working closely with almost 20 youth organizations and student associations, all GLBTTQ allies from across Québec, offering psychosocial services to young gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual, transgendered and questioning youth since 2002.
The term queer is a unifying term for the concept of sexual diversity. It includes any person who feels sexual attraction, who is faced with this attraction, discrimination, or questions regarding his or her sexual orientation or gender identity.