I am in favour of opening and supporting LGBTQ youth centres across Quebec.
An LGBTQ youth centre is an essential part of every community. It is a place where LGBTQ teens can come to take refuge after school to meet other teens and enrich their teenage experience; a particularly difficult time for many of them.
There is currently a lack of resources for LGBTQ youth. Across Quebec we have only a few LGBTQ youth centres. The majority of these centres are not funded by the Government of Quebec or the federal government, and they rely on private funding from corporations and private donors.
Through this campaign, I visited the LGBTQ youth centre in my riding of Beaconsfield for the first time. This centre is the only one of its kind in the entire West Island of Montreal; a community with a population of more than three hundred and twenty-five thousand inhabitants. This centre has been in operation for two years and they already have an extremely important role for our community.
Currently, at school, an LGBTQ teenager has few resources to turn to when he or she needs to confide, talk and change his or her mind. We are not obliged to subject our children to this type of treatment. In Quebec, we have all the tools and resources necessary to offer our LGBTQ teens a great life experience.
Despite all the positive changes that this type of centre can bring to our community, it is in financial difficulty. Despite the fact that young people would like the centre to be open every day, financial constraints force the centre to offer only one opening two days a week. In addition, this year the centre was forced to cut back on activities due to a lack of budget.
Although this centre is an important pillar of our community, to date the centre has not received any significant contribution from the Government of Quebec. We have a duty to financially support this type of program, which can greatly help our LGBTQ youth and their families. This type of centre can even prevent suicides of LGBTQ teenagers that are too common.
To truly improve the quality of life of our LGBTQ teens, we have a duty to support and fund LGBTQ centres across Quebec.
Candidate for the leadership of the Green Party of Quebec