Trans Parents & Family Law Information

Project Name

Supporting our Families: Trans Parents and Family Law Information

Trans Family Law Project from LGBTQ Parenting Network on Vimeo.

Project Partners

Lead Agency: LGBTQ Parenting Network, Sherbourne Health Centre
Partners: The LGBTQ Parenting Connection, Rainbow Health Ontario and Downtown Legal Services

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Legal Topics for Training

Transgender (trans) parents’ legal rights in the area of family law, specifically with respect to separation agreements, custody and access agreements, independent legal advice and mediation.

Project Summary

Training community and health workers and community leaders who support trans gendered parents in key areas of family law that have a particularly important impact on this community. The project will work with rural communities in southwestern Ontario and will provide web-based training opportunities.

Target Audience

  • “Trusted intermediaries” for the trans community: informal community leaders who provide support, information, and referral to trans parents in more rural and isolated settings, who have custody and access issues
  • Health and social service providers: professionals who may be working with trans parents in rural and remote settings with custody and access issues

Key Activities

This training project will take place over 12 months, with the training delivered in two key formats:

  • Two webinars will be developed and hosted
  • Five in-person training sessions of 3 hours each will be offered across the province in areas that serve rural communities including: Thunder Bay; London; St. Catharines; Peterborough

Need for Training

Trans parents are at high risk for inequitable and biased outcomes during custody disputes. While they may request help for these issues from peer support groups, the volunteer community leaders who coordinate these groups rarely possess the legal understanding needed to respond effectively. Supporting Our Families seeks to build the capacity of trans community leaders and informal support networks across the province, to respond effectively to the family law information needs of trans people who are parents, in particular, those living in rural or remote areas.

Innovative Approach

To our knowledge, this project will be the first of its kind in North America. In addition, developing informal infrastructure and peer support networks within trans communities is a new approach which may open the door to future collaborations between service providers and communities