I recently attended the Gay and Lesbian Alliance AGM. It was the first meeting in a year. The turnout was really promising and a new board was formed made up of 11 enthusiastic people, the majority of which are male.
It should be an interesting board as it has never had a male majority before. We are looking forward to seeing what ideas they come up with.
Several interesting ideas were on the agenda. One was the Yukon being given a seat on the Gay and Lesbian Chamber of Commerce. This is a national organization that gives a voice to gay-owned businesses.
Historically, the Yukon has been relegated to having to join either B.C. or Alberta in these organizations, but with some persuasion from Stephen Dunbar-Edge, who owns Yukon Pride Adventure Tours, the chamber decided to give the Yukon its own seat in the Chamber.
Also on the agenda was discussion of the Laramie Project, a joint production between GALA and the Guild, which I discussed in my previous column.
There was a discussion about approaching the public library and creating a section in the library that dealt with gay and lesbian issues as well as other topics of a sensitive nature. A member stated that he felt it was important for those who needed discretion that a section of the library could be accessible to people without others being able to see what it is they were researching.
It was suggested that books could include a variety of sensitive topics such as alcoholism, cancer and parenting issues as well as gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender topics that could be researched in privacy. A suggestion was made that the Community Development Fund might be a good resource to get funding for this project.
There was a discussion of the Queer Coffee houses that had been organized to great success by Matthew Koop-Pearce, a newcomer to the Yukon. So far, there have been two coffee houses that were very well attended.
It was suggested that they continue, at least monthly, and perhaps the venue could change on occasion. So far the Baked Café has been the venue, but it may change to include other coffee shops and perhaps a pub night at some point as well.
In conjunction with The Laramie Project, Norm Hamilton is creating a photographic exhibition and is looking for subjects. In his own words, the intent of the show is to increase public awareness and acceptance of people regardless of sexual orientation and belief.
He is looking for subjects to photograph, including expectant mothers, moms and dads with babies, same-sex couples, families with same-sex parents, as well as heterosexual partners and families. If you are interested you can visit his website at www.normhamilton.ca.