NEW REPORT: September 2015

Envisioning LGBT Refugee Rights in Canada: Is Canada a Safe Haven? 

The report examines the experiences of LGBT refugee claimants and refugees living in the GTA and the experiences of community service providers working with these communities, over the period from 2012 - 2014. A total of 92 asylum seekers and refugees participated in this study. The report calls for significant improvements in Canada’s response, including the claims process and the provision of services, and makes 37 recommendations.

REPORT: June 2014

Envisioning LGBT Refugee Rights in Canada: The Impact of Canada's New Immigration Regime 

The report examines changes in immigration and refugee policy under the Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act, December 2012. In examining the impact of these changes, the report concludes that the new regime is decidedly anti-immigrant and anti-refugee, and that the changes negatively impact LGBT refugees in particular, as a result of their unique cultural position and marginalization. Nine recommendations are included.

REPORT: June 2012

Envisioning LGBT Refugee Rights in Canada: Exploring Asylum Issues 

This initial report is based on a roundtable community consultation that Envisioning convened with agencies serving LGBT refugees and refugee claimants that identified key issues needing research, in particular, 1) What is the impact on LGBT refugees of Bill C-31 (Protecting Canada’s Immigration System Act)?; and 2) Since research is scarce on LGBT refugees’ settlement experiences, it is an open question whether Canada really is a “safe haven”. 
A need for resources was also expressed, which led to Envisioning’s three information sheets, published in January 2015.

In partnership with service providers, community groups and LGBT rights organizations in Toronto, Envisioning has conducted research and documentation on LGBT asylum in Canada to study:

- Emerging trends and root causes of forced migration for LGBT people
- Experiences and obstacles for LGBT asylum seekers
- How and to what extent their needs are being met by agencies and services
- How the changes to the Canadian refugee system affect LGBT asylum seekers

The research is focused on the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), the top destination for refugees coming to Canada. Envisioning partners bring experience and knowledge from diverse communities in the GTA and awareness of the issues affecting the communities they serve. Some partners are directly involved with providing settlement services for LGBT newcomers, while others bring expertise in policy initiatives. See "Research Team" for the list of partners and links to their websites.

The research included conducting focus groups with asylum seekers, refugees, and service providers, key informant interviews, and review and analysis of changes to immigration and refugee laws and policies in Canada.