Theme: In the Spotlight
2019 is a milestone year for the Pride movement globally and here in Canada. It’s been 50 years since the Stonewall riots shone light on how society oppressed sexual and gender diverse communities, and 50 years since Canada partially decriminalized homosexuality.
While these anniversaries prompt us to reflect on how far we have come, 2019 has shown there is still much work to be done.
In too many places, still today, hard-fought advances are being rolled back. Basic rights and human dignity are at risk. People are punished or persecuted for who they are and who they love.
In keeping with Capital Pride’s mission to celebrate, advocate, educate and connect, we are shining our spotlight on individuals and organizations that reflect our community’s rich diversity and contribute to building a more inclusive society for all, and on the many barriers that remain on the road toward true equality for all.
Dillon Black M.S.W. (they/them) is a gender-nonconforming feminist anti-violence and LGBTQ- 2IS+ rights advocate and current Ph.D. student in the Department of Criminology at the University of Ottawa. Dillon’s Ph.D. research hopes to interrogate surveillance and resistance of queer and trans communities in Canada through the intersections of privacy, technology, and gendered violence. For the past 7 years Dillon has been working with the Ottawa Coalition to End Violence Against Women (OCTEVAW) on improving institutional accountability in responses to sexual violence to meet the needs of marginalized communities both locally and nationally.
Dillon has served the last two years on the Minister on the Status of Women’s Advisory Council to Help Shape the Federal Strategy on Gender-Based Violence, and more recently Dillon was appointed by Prime Minister Trudeau to the Gender Equality Advisory Council for Canada’s G7 Presidency. In 2018, Dillon was named as one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in Global Policy on Gender Equality.
Bryan Quiñones identifies as a “bakla” or “bayot,” and also as a young nonbinary queer Filipino immigrant. Bryan immigrated to Ottawa, Canada from Cebu, Philippines in 2013. Since their arrival to Canada, Bryan attempts to explore what it means to be a nonbinary queer Filipino immigrant while existing in a white, Euro-centric, individualistic, somewhat open-minded queer society.
Bryan is a champion and a supporter of local community-based, grassroots-level organizing. Bryan has been involved with community organizations such as Ten Oaks Project, the AIDS Committee of Ottawa, Gay Zone, Kind Space, MAX Ottawa and many other organizations and groups. Bryan prioritize to support racialized and trans femme spaces, identities, and voices. Bryan is a community educator, an activist, a leader and a friend.
Bryan is loud and vivacious. They have a precious positive energy that will definitely light up the room. Bryan advocates for social equity and values anti-oppression in their social justice work. On their free time, Bryan enjoys criticizing how political institutions have prioritized white heterosexual cis men, and in turn, have failed black, indigenous, people of colour, 2SLGBTQ+ folks, immigrants, students, people with disabilities, low-income people, women, and many other marginalized folks. Bryan also enjoys drag and is hoping to be Fifi Hoo-Kers’s drag daughter.
RJ Jones is Saulteaux–Cree, originally from Treaty 1 territory in Saskatchewan and is currently living on Algonquin Territory in Ottawa. He is a Two Spirit, Non-Binary and Queer multimedia artist, educator and full-spectrum Indigenous doula. RJ is an experienced facilitator and educator and has been invited to give workshops and keynotes across Canada. He also has a non-profit working experience of over 6 years and has worked alongside Indigenous and 2SLGBTQ+ communities and within sexual health. RJ’s facilitation practice is rooted in cultural safety, harm reduction, trauma-informedness and decolonizing stigma.
RJ works hard to indigenize his practice by bridging his cultural and facilitation knowledge and has been invited across Canada to give workshops and keynotes. RJ’s passion for learning, 2SLGBTQ+ advocacy and sexual health has led him to opportunities such as serving as the President of Kind Space, being a board member at Assembly of Seven Generations (A7G) and working with Planned Parenthood Ottawa as the Curriculum Developer.