STATEMENT: Capital Pride recognizes the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Intersexphobia and Transphobia

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Capital Pride joins the international community in recognizing the 2020 International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia, Intersexphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOBIT).

Having its roots in a Canadian organization, Fondation Émergence, the date was officially adopted worldwide to commemorate the decision of the World Health Organization on May 17, 1990, to declassify homosexuality as a mental disorder. Since its inception, the day aims to raise awareness around the advancement of 2SLGBTQ+ rights worldwide, while also shedding light on the challenges ahead.

“As a Pride organization located in our nation’s capital, we recognize the importance of being agents of change both domestically and internationally. Our advocacy work with embassies and high commissions, political leaders and decision-makers remains an important pillar of our mandate,” said Davy Sabourin, Capital Pride Chairperson. “Today we remember those who fought for our rights, and acknowledge the road ahead for the global 2SLGBTQ+ community,” he added.

The 2020 campaign announced by Fondation Émergence is: Family support is essential. The campaign emphasizes on the importance of having a loving, caring family. Capital Pride encourages everyone, wherever they may be, to reach out to 2SLGBTQ+ members of their family to let them know how much they are loved and appreciated.

Simultaneously, the 2020 international IDAHOBIT theme is: ‘’Breaking the Silence’’. While encouraging everyone to join and support the global Pride movement, Capital Pride recognizes and denounces the fact that 2SLGBTQ+ voices in many parts of the world continue to be silenced by socioeconomic, political, legal, cultural, and institutional oppression – extensively perpetuated by state-sponsored homophobia, biphobia, intersexphobia and transphobia.

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride provides an update on the 2020 Summer Festival – “Wherever We Are!”

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Capital Pride recognizes that the safety and security of everyone living in the National Capital Region is essential. During these difficult times we know many people in our community, and beyond, are looking for support and guidance. Pride celebrations have always been a place of love, allyship and compassion, and we are confident that this year will be no different.

Since the declaration of the pandemic in March, Capital Pride has been hard at work developing a path forward for the annual festival, while adhering to all public health guidelines. 

Capital Pride reached a decision to deliver this year’s Pride virtually, under the theme “Wherever We Are!”. This year’s theme highlights the need for everyone to stay colourful and proud regardless of where we are physically. ‘Wherever We Are!’ highlights the reality that we are facing today. Pride isn’t just a time to party – it’s where 2SLGBTQ+ communities and allies can celebrate their true selves. Now more than ever, we must remind ourselves that we are a proud and resilient community.

The festivities will take place from August 21 – 30, and will feature both local and international talent. Festival favourites such as the official Flag Raising, Speaker Series, Capital Pride Pageant and of course the Parade, will be delivered in new and innovative ways.

More details on the timing and programming of the festival will be released in the coming weeks.

“The wellbeing of members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community remains our number one priority. Even though we are unable to celebrate in person this year, we’re looking forward to bringing people together online, through a series of exciting virtual Pride events,” said Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director of Capital Pride. 

Capital Pride would also like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank 2SLGBTQ+ organizations in the National Capital Region for providing services and support to vulnerable members of our community. While the festival will take on a new format, it will continue to be a platform for our partners. Additionally, Capital Pride urges the public to support, where possible, the many queer-owned businesses, performers, and artists that are facing a challenging time.

Our community is no stranger to adversity, and we are ready to show our pride wherever we are.

Resources:

For more information regarding COVID-19, please access the following resources:

Individuals in distress or experiencing a mental health crisis can get support over the phone by calling:

  • Ottawa Distress Centre 24/7 Crisis Line: 613-722-6914
  • Trans Lifeline (for trans individuals): 1-877-330-6366
  • LGBT Youth Line: 1-800-268-9688
  • If you are in need of an emergency shelter in Ottawa: 311
  • Tel-Aide Outaouais: 819-775-3223
  • Écoute Entraide: 1-855-EN-LIGNE (365-4463)

About Capital Pride

Capital Pride creates opportunities to celebrate, advocate, educate and connect people, respecting the full diversity of the 2SLGBTQ+ community in Canada’s capital region.

Contacts:

Osmel B. Guerra Maynes, Executive Director

Phone: 613-680-3033 ext. 100

Email: [email protected]

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride provides updates on its Annual General Meeting, upcoming programming and the 2020 Summer Festival

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The continued spread of COVID-19 in Canada and around the world has understandably raised concerns regarding the well-being of members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community and beyond. Everyone’s safety remains Capital Pride’s top priority as this situation continues to evolve. Capital Pride will continue to align its risk assessments and practices with the latest guidance from local, provincial and federal health authorities, including the Public Health Agency of Canada.

It is with heavy heart that Capital Pride has made the decision to postpone all upcoming planned community events in order to adhere to the advice of public health authorities. However, planning for the summer festival will continue with the tentative dates of August 23-30, 2020, whether it be physical or virtual programming. Capital Pride is committed to staying in contact with community partners to ensure that everyone receives timely information regarding any changes in programming.

In order to connect members of the community during this difficult time, Capital Pride will be reaching out to local 2SLGBTQ+ performers and artists in the coming weeks to create live streamed programming that maintains social distancing measures. More details will be announced soon. 

“We are facing an unprecedented time with lots of uncertainty and many lost opportunities to socialize in queer spaces, to get together and celebrate our truth. However, our priority at this time is to ensure that we continue to support our 2SLGBTQ+ communities in the National Capital Region.”

OSmel guerra Maynes, capital pride executive director

Capital Pride thanks all 2SLGBTQ+ organizations in the National Capital Region for supporting some of the most vulnerable people in the region during their time of need. Additionally, Capital Pride urges the public to support, where possible, the many queer-owned businesses, performers, and artists that are going through a challenging time.

In these difficult times, Capital Pride calls on everyone to support one another, and to remind ourselves that we are a colourful and resilient community.

Annual General Meeting

Capital Pride’s Annual General Meeting was held virtually on March 21, where former Director of Legal and Policy, Geneviève Colverson, was elected Vice Chair. Geneviève succeeds Tara Paterson who did not stand for re-election.

“I would like to extend a sincere thank you to the Board of Directors for the opportunity to serve as the Vice Chair. I remain committed to advancing Capital Pride’s mission and I look forward to serving our community as a leader within the organization,” said Geneviève Colverson.

The 2020 Executive Officers consist of:

  • Davy Sabourin, Chairperson
  • Geneviève Colverson, Vice Chair
  • Chris Day, Secretary
  • Mandy Wilson, Community Engagement Officer

“Geneviève has done outstanding work as our Director of Legal and Policy, which I know will translate very well into her new role”, said re-elected Chairperson, Davy Sabourin. “Tara contributed significantly to Capital Pride’s advancement in 2019, and I am grateful that she will continue to serve on the Board as director-at-large to further support and contribute to our ambitious goals in the coming year”, he added.

More information about Capital Pride’s Board of Directors can be found at capitalpride.ca/about-us/board-of-directors.

Resources:

For more information regarding COVID-19, please access the following resources:

Individuals in distress or experiencing a mental health crisis, can get support over the phone by calling:

  • Ottawa Distress Centre 24/7 Crisis Line: 613-722-6914
  • Trans Lifeline (for trans individuals): 1-877-330-6366
  • LGBT Youth Line: 1-800-268-9688
  • If you are in need of an emergency shelter in Ottawa: 311
  • Tel-Aide Outaouais: 819-775-3223
  • Écoute Entraide: 1-855-EN-LIGNE (365-4463)

About Capital Pride

Capital Pride creates opportunities to celebrate, advocate, educate and connect people, respecting the full diversity of the 2SLGBTQ+ community in Canada’s capital region.

Contacts:

Osmel B. Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
Phone: 613.680.3033 ext. 100
Email: [email protected]

Riyadh Nazerally, Director of Communications (Board of Directors)
Email: [email protected]

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

The Capital Pride Youth Committee Is Recruiting!

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Calling 2SLGBTQ+ youth based in the National Capital Region: the Capital Pride Youth Committee wants your voice! 

Interested in advocating youth perspectives and organizing youth-focused events in the 2SLGBTQ+ community? The Capital Pride Youth Committee is opening positions to youth aged 13 to 25. Committee members have the opportunity to gain meaningful skills, experience and volunteer hours as well as engage with and impact their community.

The deadline for applications is March 1, 2020, 11:59 PM. Interviews will be held on March 14, 2020. Further information will be sent out to those selected to advance in the interview process.

Apply Here!

We look forward to working with you!

Contact:

David Thibodeau, Co-Chair, CPYC
[email protected]

Alicia Cooke, Outreach Lead, CPYC
[email protected]

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride announces the second annual WinterPride festival

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Capital Pride announced the second annual WinterPride festival today. Taking place February 4-9 during Winterlude, the National Capital Region will be dazzled by festive winter activities, performances, and much more! Building on the success of last years’ inaugural event, this years’ WinterPride aims to provide spaces for all members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community and allies to celebrate and advocate.

“We have a great lineup for everyone to enjoy for this year’s WinterPride — with a focus toward family and youth! I am excited and I cannot wait to see everyone enjoying themselves.”

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Capital Pride Executive Director

To kick off the festivities Capital Pride will be welcoming speaker jaye simpson, an Oji-Cree non-binary trans woman writer whose roots hail from Sapotaweyak Cree Nation, Treaty 4. They currently ruminate, reside and resist on the unceded territory of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh nations, colonially known as Vancouver. They have survived institutions such as the Ministry of Child and Family Development and Metis Family Services. jaye will also be joined by other local two spirit writers to share their experiences at the National Arts Centre.

The week will also be full of rhythm thanks to artists like Kimberly Sunstrum, DJ Sandy Duperval, and in partnership with the CAP City Ballroom Alliance — a program lead by the AIDS Committee of Ottawa (ACO) voguing royalty, Twysted Miyake-Mugler.

Families and local youth can enjoy the Youth Arts Showcase and Reception, featuring art and drag performances from local 2SLGBTQ+ youth, as well as a clothing swap, at the Ottawa Arts Gallery. Capital Pride is also proud to support the Ontario LGBT Youthline’s Community Launch happening during WinterPride, followed by an afternoon of crafting and button-making. Brand new outdoor activities will also take place, including Drag on Ice – a partnered event with the Bank Street BIA. The week will conclude with a march, or a skate, down the Rideau Canal on February 9th.

Stay up-to-date on all the exciting WinterPride programming by visiting the Capital Pride Facebook page or capitalpride.ca. Event details will be announced in the coming days.

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride appoints first-ever Executive Director

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Capital Pride announced the appointment of its first-ever Executive Director today, Osmel Guerra Maynes, marking a major step in the organization’s growth – made possible through the support of federal, provincial and municipal funders, as well as its valued sponsors.

Osmel is an experienced social justice activist, non-profit sector executive and seasoned event planner. He was born in the Dominican Republic and was raised in the twin-island state of Antigua and Barbuda. In 2003, he immigrated to Canada as an international student to pursue a degree in Political Science at Carleton University in Ottawa. He has called Canada home for more than 10 years and identifies as an Afro-Latino cisgender queer man.

Picture of Capital Pride's first-ever Executive Director
Credit: Jesse Winter/Star Vancouver

“As the first Latino Canadian immigrant of African descent to hold this position, I am honoured and excited to have been selected to lead Capital Pride and further its mission, in the first Canadian city I ever called home,” said Guerra Maynes. Osmel is excited and honoured to advance the vision and mission of Capital Pride and strongly believes in the power of inclusion to affect lasting social change. “I look forward to working with the local community to empower all members of the diverse 2SLGBTQ+ communities to live their truth, through the exciting programming we have in store for the National Capital Region. There will be year-round activities to celebrate, educate, advocate and connect people – open to everyone!” he added.

Working with 2SLGBTQ+ organizations in both Toronto and Vancouver, Osmel narrowed his focus on advancing grassroots and province-wide social programming, enhancing the inclusion of marginalized voices, and overseeing effective strategic planning in the non-profit and charitable sectors.

“We are proud and honoured to have someone as special as Osmel accept Capital Pride’s Executive Director position,” said Davy Sabourin, Capital Pride Chairperson. “It was a very competitive and laborious selection process, and Osmel exceeded our expectations,” he added.

“As you know, the organization, festival and programming have been growing and seeing a record number of participants and attendees. Additionally, we continue to dedicate much of our attention and efforts toward elevating Capital Pride’s mission of celebration, education, advocacy and connection. We are confident that Osmel has the right skills and experience to help move our ambitious goals forward” said Tara Paterson, Capital Pride Vice Chair.

The appointment is effective today, January 6, 2020. Capital Pride will be hosting a community reception in the weeks to come where members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community and organizations, stakeholders, sponsors and partners, allies and friends will be able to meet Capital Pride’s new Executive Director.

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride Statement on Transgender Day of Remembrance 2019

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On November 20th every year communities across the globe memorialize those whose lives were lost in acts of anti-trans violence.

In 1999, a vigil was held to remember the murder of Rita Hester, a black trans woman. This moment in 2SLGBTQ+ history started an important tradition that has become the annual Trans Day of Remembrance.

Members of the trans community continue to face violence and discrimination. Today 20% of all trans Ontarians “had been physically or sexually assaulted for being trans, and another 34% had been verbally threatened or harassed but not assaulted” (Trans PULSE Project).

Capital Pride stands firmly against all forms of violence and discrimination, understanding that there is more work to be done to protect vulnerable members of the 2SLGBTQ+ community.

Ottawa’s Trans Day of Remembrance Vigil will take place on Nov 20th at the Canadian Tribute to Human Rights. For more information please visit the Facebook event page.

Capital Pride Board of Directors

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride advocates for 2SLGBTQ+ communities in Canada, year-round

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Capital Pride’s 2019 summer festival may be over, but our advocacy efforts continue apace. As a Pride organization based in a G-7 capital and mandated to advocate for 2SLGBTQ+ communities, Capital Pride is highlighting issues of local, national and international concern while working constructively to break down remaining barriers to true inclusion and equality.

Capital Pride’s 2019 summer festival’s theme was In the Spotlight. It reflected our commitment as an organization to showcase individuals and organizations that work year-round to build a more inclusive community, country, and world. It also called us to shine light on remaining barriers on the road toward true equality.

“Two of the four pillars of our mission are advocacy and education” said Davy Sabourin, Capital Pride Chairperson. “Pride is political and we do have a responsibility to advocate on behalf of 2SLGBTQ+ communities, and educate the public about ongoing issues that need to be addressed”, he added.

As such, on August 15, 2019, Capital Pride sent letters to the leaders of the major federal political parties calling on them to publicly commit to the following:

  1. Ending, once and for all, the discriminatory and irrational blood donation deferral for many queer and trans members of the community. Capital Pride is of the view that this policy, targeting men of have sex with men and trans women, is not based on science; it is grounded in ignorance. Capital Pride stresses that Canada should immediately follow the lead of countries like Chile, Italy, Spain, Portugal and Poland, all of which have completely repealed discriminatory blood bans;
  2. Ensuring unrestricted and equal access across the country to gender-affirming surgeries for trans people nationwide. Access to such procedures varies widely across the country. Capital Pride believes that it should be universal. Yet in some provinces, no practitioner is available to perform such surgeries safely;
  3. Banning, by force of law if necessary, gay and trans ‘conversion therapy.’ Capital Pride is of the view that this vile pseudo-science, whose practitioners attempt to suppress or change a person’s sexuality or gender identity, has no place in Canada or anywhere else; and
  4. Committing to include two-spirit and queer indigenous voices in reconciliation conversations. Capital Pride believes that these perspectives are vitally important in addressing past wrongs and in moving forward together toward full and meaningful reconciliation for all.

Capital Pride also called on the federal Minister of Health, the Hon. Ginette Petitpas-Taylor, to take real action to improve access and eliminate patient costs for transition-related care. Capital Pride deplores that in Canada, far too many trans people are still unable to access gender-affirming surgeries due to travel, cost, and/or delays. Quebec, British Columbia, and Ontario, are the only provinces where there are surgeons available to perform most gender-affirming procedures. Almost all trans people who live outside of Montreal, Vancouver and Toronto are required to travel to access care.

In a correspondence addressed to the Hon. Stephen Lecce, Ontario’s Minister of Education, Capital Pride reiterated the views it had previously expressed directly to the government for a curriculum that teaches young people about sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, online safety, and consent. Following the release of the revised elementary Health and Physical Education curriculum on August 21, 2019, Capital Pride sent a follow-up letter to Minister Lecce dated August 22 commending him for taking on board many of our suggestions,  while also expressing lingering concerns. Specifically, Capital Pride expressed concerns regarding the so-called opt out clause for parents, and high school is too late to be teaching the facts about sexual orientation as well as gender identity and expression. Capital Pride continues to call on governments to empower all students with the facts on these matters in earlier grades.

Locally, Capital Pride is committed to working with the Chair of Ottawa’s Police Services Board and our recently named Police Chief Peter Sloly to improve relations between the Ottawa Police Service and the 2SLGBTQ+ community. 

Taking full advantage of our location in a world capital that is home to more than 125 diplomatic missions, Capital Pride also reached out to a number of embassies and high commissions expressing our appreciation and solidarity to countries that have constitutionally enshrined protections for sexual and gender-diverse communities. Capital Pride also communicated with the missions of countries that are recognized by the International Lesbian and Gay Association as state-sponsors of homophobia and transphobia, denouncing their stances and calling for the respect and upholding of full dignity for 2SLGBTQ+ communities.

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride receives funding through the new Federal Tourism Growth Strategy

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Today, the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Member of Parliament for Ottawa Centre, announced up to $200,000 in FedDev Ontario funding for Capital Pride through the Canadian Experiences Fund (CEF).

See full official Government of Canada release here.

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride statement on violence and hate at local community event

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Capital Pride issued the following statement in response to a hateful incident yesterday:

The violent and hateful incidents that occurred at a community organized family drag storytime have no place in our community.

That children and their families were targeted specifically is deeply troubling but we recognize that members of the the 2SLGBTQ+ community have long been victims of hateful violence as have Indigenous communities, racialized communities, immigrants, religious groups and many others. These acts are aimed only at silencing and dividing our communities.

We will not be silenced. We will unite and will not stop our efforts to build a more inclusive community.

Capital Pride is reviewing its safety and security plans for its events this week and will continue to work with its partners at the City of Ottawa and in the community to monitor and respond to incidents.

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride Publishes 2019 Community Consultation Report

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Following the Capital region’s first ever WinterPride in 2019 and feedback from the community, the Capital Pride Board of Directors committed to initiating a community consultation process to gather input from 2SLGBTQ+ community members and organizations. The consultations took place in May 2019.

The mission of Capital Pride / Fierté dans la Capitale is to create opportunities to celebrate, advocate, educate and connect people, respecting the full diversity of the 2SLGBTQ+ community in Canada’s capital region, on the unceded and unsurrendered land of the Algonquin Anishinaabe people. Capital Pride is committed to reflecting the perspectives of the communities we serve.

The Consultation Report summarizes the input gathered throughout the process and outlines the steps that Capital Pride will be taking to incorporate, with its finite resources, the feedback and ideas from the community and local 2SLGBTQ+ organizations.

Download the report here: Capital Pride 2019 Community Consultation Report.

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride announces recipients of 2019 Community Project Fund

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Capital Pride’s Community Project Fund supports local community groups and individuals who organize events and activities that further one (or more) of Capital Pride’s objectives: education, advocacy, connection or celebration. The Fund provides grants of up to $1000 allowing groups to enhance or develop events taking place during the Festival.

Applicants organizing events or programming that serves marginalized and/or traditionally underrepresented communities within the LGBTQ2+ community were encouraged and prioritized. These include events or programming for trans people, non-binary people, racialized people, Indigenous people, people with disabilities, people living with HIV/AIDS, migrants, and people from other marginalized communities.

We are pleased to recognize the following groups who have received support from Capital Pride’s 2019 Community Project Fund.

Chalk Rainbow – Craie-en-ciel

Presented by: Chalk Rainbow – Craie-en-ciel
Saturday, August 24
11am – 3pm
Parc Commémoratif (Gatineau)

About the Project:
Chalk Rainbow is a bilingual community event that celebrates the Gatineau LGBTQ2+ community, and welcomes the participation of families, friends and neighbors! Our volunteer committee invites people from the local community to join in the celebrations to break bread with members of the LGBTQ2+ community, and enjoy free refreshments and food. Several community-based groups and organizations will be participating in the community fair to engage participants in their services.

More info


The Women’s Dance

Presented by The Amazon Collective
Saturday, August 24
8pm – 12:00am
Ron Kolbus Community Centre

About the Project:
The tradition of the Women’s Pride dance, always taking place the night before the Pride Festival parade, started by the now disbanded organization “LIXCHIX”. Since then it has been organized by LOG (Lesbian Outdoor Group). This year, The Amazon Collective has teamed up with LOG to revitalize the event with new artists and DJs and improved sound and lighting.

Get Tickets


Re Building Community Panel

Presented by: Just/Act Committee, Ottawa Senior Pride Network
Thursday, August 22
7pm – 9pm
Keefer Room, Ottawa City Hall

About the Project:

In recognition of 50 years since the decriminalization of some same sex activity in Canada, the Just/Act Committee is organizing a panel discussion on what the work ‘community’ means in the future of Ottawa’s LGBT movement. The panel will facilitate a discussion on what issues of current and future importance our community faces, and what we can learn from the advocacy work of past activists.

More Information


Village Legacy Project Documentary

Presented by: The Village Legacy Project

About the Project:
As part of an expansion of the docu-series of local LGBT history, the Village Legacy Project is developed a new documentary on the history of Pride celebrations in Ottawa. Featuring interviews from Yvon Vaillant, Marion Steel and Gabriella Goliger and archival photos and video footage, the video covers the very first Pride Picnic in Strathcona Park in 1986 to the first parade three years later to what is has grown into today.

More Information


Two Spirit Extravaganza

Presented by: Wabano Centre for Aboriginal Heatlh
Friday, August 23
8pm – 12midnight
299 Montreal Road

About the Project:
The Two Spirit Extravaganza is a night to remember! Everyone in the community is invited to celebrate pride. Event includes live music, entertainment, food and mocktails, games and prizes. Free admission.

More information


Workshop and Performance with Witch Prophet

Presented by: Girls + Rock Ottawa
Sunday, August 18, 2019
Club SAW (67 Nicholas Street)

About the Project:
Girls+ Rock Ottawa will present two events featuring Toronto-based artist Witch Prophet, a queer Ethiopian-Eritrean woman and mother, self-managed singer/songwriter, and CEO and founder of Heart Lake Records (FKA 88 Days of Fortune). Witch Prophet will present a workshop focused on self-managing creative projects as an independent artist, which will cover topics such as negotiation and asserting your artistic value, securing bookings, and marketing yourself.

The day-time workshop will be followed by an evening concert featuring Witch Prophet as the headliner, as well as local queer artists and alumni of the Ottawa Rock Camp for Girls+.

More information


Sweet Tooth: Rainbow Brick Road Fundraising Event

Presented by: Rainbow Brick Road & Capital Rainbow Refuge
Friday, August 23
8pm – 2am
Babylon Nightclub

About the Project:
Sweet Tooth is a fundraiser dance party event featuring local DJs, themed décor, food vendors, and burlesque performers. The event seeks to create a safe(r) space for people to connect, let loose, and play together, as well as to raise funds to support Rainbow Brick Road.

>More information

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride Reports on Record-Breaking Year

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Capital Pride today published its annual report for 2017-18 which saw the largest Pride Festival yet in the National Capital Region – traditional territory of the Algonquin people.

“Our 2017-2018 annual report is a testament to the power of community” says Capital Pride Chairperson Davy Sabourin. “The report not only highlights last year’s tremendous successes: it’s also a way to demonstrate how we – a mostly volunteer-run organization with finite resources – work to deliver on our mission in concert with community partners, members and allies.”

As highlighted in the report, Capital Pride grew significantly in 2017-18:

  • We expanded the Summer Festival to two days
  • We added new youth events attendance to which doubled
  • We launched the Community Fund project
  • More than 150 groups marched in the parade
  • Our community organized more than 65 events
  • We expanded the street festival to include Somerset Street between Bank Street and O’Connor Street
  • Our 2018 Pride Pageant attracted record turnout with a sell-out attendance of more than 600
  • We booked our largest headline acts yet, including: Bif Naked, Brooke Candy, Elijah Woods x Jamie Fine, and RuPaul’s Drag Race Superstars Aja, and The Vixen

“Capital Pride wouldn’t be what it is without the dedication and passion of our volunteers and staff on the Operations Committee, and our volunteer Board of Directors. We are also grateful for community members and allies, stakeholders, different levels of government, sponsors and donors for supporting us in our common goal of creating opportunities to educate, advocate, celebrate and connect people”, says Capital Pride Community Engagement Officer Mandy Wilson.

The full report is available here.

Preparations for Capital Pride’s 2019 summer festival are well underway and registration is in full swing for the parade and community fair. The public is invited to visit www.ottawacapitalpride.ca or follow Capital Pride on social media for more details.

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Statement: Blood donation deferral period drops to three months: a step in the right direction, falls short on achieving equality

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Capital Pride welcomes the announcement made by Minister of Health, Ginette Petitpas Taylor, wherein she informed Canadians of Health Canada’s decision to require men who have sex with men to abstain for three months before they can be eligible to donate blood, rather than one year.

The Canadian Red Cross Society introduced a donor eligibility criterion that excluded all men who have had sex with a man even once since 1977. This criterion was embedded into Health Canada regulations in 1992.

Capital Pride is of the view that although the blood donation deferral drop from one year to three months is a step in the right direction, it remains a discriminatory policy that targets two-spirit, gay, bisexual and queer men, trans women and men who have sex with men (“2SGBTQ/MSM”). Therefore, it falls short on achieving equality.

In recent months, Capital Pride has engaged with members of parliament to advocate for the removal of the restrictions against 2SGBTQ/MSM wishing to donate blood. Capital Pride continues to call on the federal government to follow countries like Chile, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Poland and others, who have completely repealed discriminatory blood donation bans for 2SGBTQ/MSM.

Capital Pride Board of Directors

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Job Opportunity: 2019 Summer Interns

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Volunteer Coordinator

Capital Pride is seeking a summer intern to fill the role of Volunteer Coordinator and help plan and execute the 2019 Capital Pride Festival.

The Coordinator will manage Pride’s Volunteer Program, work with the Operations Team to develop comprehensive event and volunteer plans, recruit over 150 volunteers and prepare a training program.
Position Type: Summer Contract (4 months)
Monday, May 20 – Friday, August 30, 2019

Hours of Work: 35 hours/week
Some evening and weekend work will be required.
The successful applicant must be available for Festival Week: Sunday, August 18 to Sunday, August 25, 2019.

Rate of Pay: $16 per hour

Job Description

Volunteer Recruitment
  • Work with the Operations Lead and Operations Team to identify the volunteer requirements for the 2019 festival.
  • Develop volunteer job descriptions which include time commitments and job duties.
  • Work with the Marketing and Communications Coordinator to develop a promotional plan to promote the volunteer vacancies.
  • Develop an application process and respond to inquiries from prospective volunteers.
  • Conduct community outreach to promote the volunteer opportunities.
Volunteer Training and Development
  • Develop and implement a training program for volunteers that takes into account the different types of volunteer areas (community fair, parade, youth events) and includes an anti-oppression training component.
  • Develop opportunities for volunteers from a range of backgrounds and skill sets to be engaged in meaningful volunteer opportunities.
Volunteer Management
  • Work with the Operations Lead and Operations Committee to develop volunteer staffing schedules for each event.
  • Schedule volunteers taking into consideration event requirements and volunteer availability.
  • Act as the primary liaison for all volunteer staff including responding to inquiries and fielding questions.
Event Coordination
  • Assist with the execution of our events, including co-branded community events, media launch, sponsor reception, family and youth events, pride pageant, networking events, festival weekend, and parade.
  • Assist with the planning of various event components, including guestlist and invitations, venues, speakers and entertainment, food and beverage, photography and videography, accommodation and transportation, health and safety, and marketing.

Other

  • Prepare a Volunteer Management Report following the Festival that includes a summary of all communications materials, media mentions and social media strategy.
  • Support other members of the Festival Team with general tasks as they arise.

Qualifications  

  • Member of, or ally to, the 2SLGBTQ+ community and a commitment to operating within an anti-oppressive work framework.
  • Knowledge of, and/or experience working or volunteering in, the 2SLGBTQ+ community.
  • Experience in the planning and execution of volunteer run events
  • Experience leading teams or managing volunteers or people (either in a work or volunteer setting).
  • Comfortable with public speaking and conducting outreach.
  • Detail oriented and very organized.
  • Ability to exercise good judgment and discretion in busy and occasionally high-stress situations.
  • Familiarity with Microsoft Excel.

Eligibility

It is expected that this position will be supported by the Canada Summer Jobs Program. As such, applicants must meet the following requirements:  

  • be between 15 and 30 years of age at the start of the employment;
  • be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or person to whom refugee protection has been conferred under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act for the duration of the employment; and,
  • have a valid Social Insurance Number at the start of employment and be legally entitled to work in Canada in accordance with relevant provincial or territorial legislation and regulations.

Applicants are asked to submit a resume and cover letter to [email protected] no later than Monday, May 13, 2019. Only those candidates contacted for an interview will be notified.

Capital Pride is committed to the principles of employment equity. Applications from all qualified candidates are welcome; in particular, applications are encouraged from racialized people, Indigenous people, people with disabilities, queer and trans people, and women.


Marketing and Communications Coordinator

Capital Pride is seeking a summer intern to fill the role of Marketing and Communications Coordinator and help plan and execute the 2019 Capital Pride Festival

The Coordinator will assist developing marketing materials, producing the annual pride guide and managing social media channels.
Position Type: Summer Contract (4 months)
Monday, May 20 – Friday, August 30, 2019

Hours of Work: 35 hours/week
Some evening and weekend work will be required.
The successful applicant must be available for Festival Week: Sunday, August 18 to Sunday, August 25, 2019.

Rate of Pay: $16 per hour

Job Description

Marketing
  • Assist in the development of a marketing strategy to promote the Festival throughout the National Capital Region including online marketing, traditional marketing (newspapers, radio) and through promotional campaigns and community outreach.
  • Implement a marketing strategy to promote the Festival in key tourism markets throughout Ontario and Quebec.
  • Assist the Operations Lead with the development of communications materials including text for websites, Pride Guide content and written text for marketing materials.
  • Work with graphics designer to develop promotional materials and all collateral.
  • Work with the Operations Lead to develop communication materials and event signage required for the Festival.
Social Media
  • Coordinating the Festival’s bilingual social media strategy including developing a social media calendar, scheduling and posting content and monitoring social media platforms.
  • Lead the Festival volunteer social media team and supervise on-site photographers and videographers during the Festival.
  • Monitor the Festival’s general email inbox and social media accounts to respond to inquiries from community groups and festival attendees.
Media Relations
  • Develop a media relations strategy including identifying opportunities to engage the media, draft media releases and monitor media mentions.
  • Coordinate media requests from both English and French media including conducting background research, scheduling interviews and preparing media messaging for spokespeople.
Event Coordination
  • Assist with the execution of our events, including co-branded community events, media launch, sponsor reception, family and youth events, pride pageant, networking events, festival weekend, and parade.
  • Assist with the planning of various event components, including guestlist and invitations, venues, speakers and entertainment, food and beverage, photography and videography, accommodation and transportation, health and safety, and marketing.
Other
  • Prepare a Communications Report following the Festival that includes a summary of all communications materials, media mentions and social media strategy.
  • Support other members of the Festival Team with general tasks as they arise.
Qualifications
  • Member of, or ally to, the 2SLGBTQ+ community and a commitment to operating within an anti-oppressive work framework.
  • Knowledge of, and/or experience working or volunteering in, the 2SLGBTQ+ community
  • Experience managing social media channels for other organizations
  • Ability to exercise good judgment and discretion in busy and occasionally high-stress situations.
  • Bilingualism is strongly preferred
  • Familiarity with Adobe Creative Suite is an asset

Eligibility

It is expected that this position will be supported by the Canada Summer Jobs Program. As such, applicants must meet the following requirements:  

  • be between 15 and 30 years of age at the start of the employment;
  • be a Canadian citizen, permanent resident, or person to whom refugee protection has been conferred under the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act for the duration of the employment; and,
  • have a valid Social Insurance Number at the start of employment and be legally entitled to work in Canada in accordance with relevant provincial or territorial legislation and regulations.

Applicants are asked to submit a resume and cover letter to [email protected] no later than Monday, May 13, 2019. Only those candidates contacted for an interview will be notified.

Capital Pride is committed to the principles of employment equity. Applications from all qualified candidates are welcome; in particular, applications are encouraged from racialized people, Indigenous people, people with disabilities, queer and trans people, and women.

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride Annual General Meeting celebrates 2018 success & Pride’s building momentum

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For immediate release: Capital Pride announces new executive officers, updates bylaws to recognize two-spirit community members first for all future references to 2SLGBTQ+.

Ottawa, Ontario – Capital Pride has concluded its Annual General Meeting (AGM) for 2018 – a record-setting year for Pride to build on as the organization moves forward. Capital Pride’s finalized annual report for 2018 will be available in both of Canada’s official languages in the coming weeks.

Keeping with Capital Pride’s bylaws governing the election of executive officers at each AGM, a diverse, dynamic and accomplished team will serve in key positions for 2019:

“Capital Pride begins 2019 from a position of strength. Our organization has never been stronger because our team has never been stronger,” said Chairperson, Davy Sabourin. “Working with incredible volunteers, community partners, and contractors, we are united and ready to deliver amazing opportunities for the 2SLGBTQ+ community.”

“Capital Pride respects the full diversity of our community, and we are committed to doing even more to ensure we reflect the full range of perspectives and experiences of the people we serve,” said Vice-Chair, Tara Paterson.

Responding to suggestions from two-spirit community members and recognizing the primacy of Indigenous peoples in Canada’s national story, Capital Pride’s bylaws have been updated to recognize two-spirit members of the rainbow family first in all future references to 2SLGBTQ+. Capital Pride is the first Pride organization in Canada to make this important step. Other bylaw changes are reflected here.

Preparations for Capital Pride’s 2019 summer festival are already well underway. It will take place from Sunday, August 18, to Sunday, August 25, with the parade taking place on the 25th. Capital Pride is currently recruiting for a visionary new Festival Director. Sponsorship packages and registration for organizations and groups participating in the community fair and parade will be available late March.

Capital Pride creates opportunities to celebrate, advocate, educate and connect people, respecting the full diversity of the 2SLGBTQ+ community in Canada’s Capital Region.

More information

Capital Pride Communications Team
613-680-3033
[email protected]

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride Launches First-Ever WinterPride

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Capital Prides invites the National Capital Region to show their pride during Winterlude; with a week of brand new programming, performances, learning opportunities and activism.

Ottawa, Ontario – Capital Pride launches its WinterPride today, taking place February 6th through 10th, co-produced in partnership with Canadian Heritage and Winterlude (Capital Experience). WinterPride will honour the 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalization of homosexual acts in Canada as its theme; celebrating the hard fought triumphs of the LGBTQ2+ community, while recognizing the important work left to be done.

Following the biggest Capital Pride Festival ever in the summer of 2018, WinterPride continues the momentum. The first pride celebration of its kind in the region will feature local stars, including Ms. Capital Pride 2018 Kimmy Dymond and Mr. Capital Pride Charli Deville; as well as international figures, including American Horror Story and The Bold and the Beautiful actor Chaz Bono, and RuPaul’s Drag Race superstars Derrick Barry and Trinity the Tuck. Our Speaker Series will also welcome trans activists from the National Capital Region and the surrounding regions to share their lived experience and speak about their advocacy work.

“Since the summer festival, Capital Pride maintains its commitment to being more community-driven. That’s why we consulted the community on what the first WinterPride should look like, said Davy Sabourin, Chairperson of Capital Pride. “Working closely with Canadian Heritage, we have been able to apply the wishes of the community, all while having programming that aligns with the four pillars of Capital Pride’s mission: education, advocacy, celebration and connection”

The inaugural WinterPride programming includes:

  • Speaker Series: Trans Voices, featuring local and regional activists, and an in-depth conversation with Chaz Bono, son of Sonny Bono and Cher;
  • The inaugural Capital Pride Awards Gala honouring leaders from the local LGBTQ2+ community, announcing the 2019 Grand Marshal and Youth Marshal and the first ever Community Champion. Including performances by RuPaul’s Drag Race superstars Derrick Barry and Trinity the Tuck;
  • An exciting weekend of programming on Sparks Street featuring Montreal legend Mado, burlesque and boylesque performers, impersonators, drag stars, and more; and
  • A commemorative march in honour of the 50 year anniversary of the partial decriminalization of homosexual acts in Canada, beginning at Parliament Hill.

“Between the summer festival and now, we’ve been working closely with the amazing and supportive team at Canadian Heritage to produce a memorable festival that gets the community out in the winter,” said Festival Director Christian Garceau. “Our operations team has volunteered so many hours to create exciting programming at the Canadian Museum of History, on Sparks St., and at Parliament Hill, and we couldn’t be more excited to share WinterPride with everyone.”

See the entire WinterPride schedule here.

Capital Pride creates opportunities to celebrate, advocate, educate and connect people, respecting the full diversity of the LGBTQ2+ community in Canada’s Capital Region. Capital Pride hosts the 2019 WinterPride from February 6th to 10th.

MORE INFORMATION:

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride Announces First-Ever “WinterPride”

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For immediate release
Thursday, December 13, 2018

Following the region’s largest Pride festival yet in summer 2018, Capital Pride teams up with Canadian Heritage and Winterlude to co-produce 5 days of winter programming including a march commemorating the 50-year anniversary of the partial decriminalization of homosexual acts in Canada.

Ottawa, Ontario – Capital Pride announced today it is producing its first-ever winter edition of Capital Pride, entitled “Capital Pride Presents: WinterPride.” The festival will take place during Winterlude from February 6 to 10 2019, in partnership with Canadian Heritage.

“We’re excited to provide important LGBTQ2+ programming, not just throughout our summer festival, but all year round”  said Davy Sabourin, Capital Pride Chairperson, “Loneliness and isolation can particularly affect members of our community, even more so during the colder months. Ottawa is very much a winter city and we’re stepping out to provide opportunities to celebrate, advocate, educate, and connect people throughout the year. ”

“Anyone who’s been to a summer Pride Festival would recognize planning an outdoor Pride Festival in February presents some challenges, but also some great opportunities to bring the community and its allies together for unique events on an outdoor stage, for a street party, and for a couple indoor events where we can warm up.” added Festival Director Christian Garceau. “The local drag and burlesque communities are excited for the challenge of modifying their acts for an outdoor stage.”

The programming includes:

  • 2 evenings of performances on the Main Stage on Sparks Street (corner of Sparks and Bank)
  • Family-friendly activities on Saturday afternoon focused on sports and outdoor activities 
  • The inaugural edition of the Capital Pride Awards Gala at the Museum of History in Gatineau
  • A Sunday march recognizing the 50-year anniversary of the partial decriminalization of homosexual acts in Canada and a push for greater equality
  • A speakers’ series event on the topic of advocacy
  • The second series of contribution from the Capital Pride Community Fund to support community events.

“Capital Pride will again have the opportunity to recognize those who make a difference in the everyday lives of our community members by presenting the 2018 Community Champion of the Year Award, as well as the 2019 Summer Festival Grand and Youth Marshals following an open nomination process” added Mr. Sabourin. “We will also encourage community members to host their own events with the second iteration of the Capital Pride Community Fund.”

“Canadian Heritage is proud to present Winterlude, and we acknowledge the support of Capital Pride as one of our new programming partners for this year’s festival. From February 1 to 18, 2019, enjoy an urban winter experience, with all the traditional staples and many new features. Celebrate our artistic and culinary talent, Indigenous culture, as well as LGBTQ2+ culture, history and pride. Discover the festival’s new destinations and more dynamic, diverse programming. Whatever your age or interests, whether you’re from Canada’s Capital Region or elsewhere in the country or the world, I invite you to come take part because THIS is Winterlude!” said The Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism.

Capital Pride creates opportunities to celebrate, advocate, educate and connect people, respecting the full diversity of the LGBTQ2+ community in Canada’s Capital Region. Capital Pride hosts its first Capital Pride Presents: WinterPride Festival from February 6 to 10, 2019.


MORE INFORMATION:
Siofra Mcalister, Media Relations Coordinator & Allison Caverly, Assistant Media Relations Coordinator:  613-680-3033 ext. 103 | [email protected]

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

World AIDS Day: Capital Pride continues to be committed to creating spaces for those affected by HIV/AIDS

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On World AIDS Day, December 1, Capital Pride reiterates its commitment to creating spaces where all LGBTQ2+ people are safe and accepted – including those living with HIV/AIDS.

HIV and AIDS is a global epidemic that disproportionately affects members of the queer and trans community. In Canada, there are approximately 63,110 people are living with HIV (2016).

While there is no cure for HIV, the virus is treatable. In fact, a groundswell of research confirms that when a person living with HIV is on effective treatment, it will reduce the viral load to undetectable levels which protects their health and makes HIV untransmittable to their sexual partners. For this reason, in 2018 Capital Pride signed on to the consensus statement of the U=U campaign: Undetectable = Untransmittable.

Capital Pride is proud to support the following organizations that serve people affected, impacted by and/or at risk of HIV/AIDS in the Capital Region:

  • AIDS Committee of Ottawa: Provides support, prevention, education and outreach services to people affected by, impacted by and at risk of HIV/AIDS in Ottawa.
  • Bruce House: a community-based organization providing housing, compassionate care and support in Ottawa for people living with HIV and AIDS, based on the belief that everyone has the right to live and die with dignity.
  • MAX Ottawa: a community-based organization that focuses on maximising the health and wellness of gay, bisexual, Two-spirit, queer, and other guys who are into guys, both cis and trans in the Ottawa region.
  • Le BRAS Outaouais:  a community-based organization which has the mission of intervention and a community action to improve the quality of life of the population of the Outaouais with respect to HIV/AIDS.
CONTACT:

Tara Paterson, Vice Chair | [email protected]

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033

Capital Pride committed to working to end transphobia in all its forms

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Trans Day of Remembrance is a day to mourn and commemorate people who have lost their lives to transphobic violence. Capital Pride grieves the pain of members of our communities who are subject to trauma, oppression, illness, abuse and harassment.

In Canada, more than one third of trans youth report being physically threatened or injured in the past year and 65% of trans people have experienced intimate partner violence. For trans people of colour, violence and discrimination is even worse: globally, 84% of trans people who were murdered in 2017 were racialized.

Capital Pride is committed to working to end to transphobia in all its forms. We celebrate the resilience of trans and gender diverse people across the world and will continue to create spaces where trans and gender diverse people can express themselves without fear of violence or harassment.

Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR) is an annual observance on November 20 that honors the memory of those whose lives were lost in acts of anti-transgender violence.

CONTACT INFORMATION:

Tara Paterson, Vice Chair | [email protected]

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More information

Osmel Guerra Maynes, Executive Director
[email protected]
613-680-3033