Let Us Stay
Homosexuality permeates all borders, religions and cultures yet it is one of the most consistently persecuted traits in the world. In over 75 countries homosexuality is outlawed. In at least five countries homosexual acts are punishable by death.
Most lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) refugees have suffered immense psychological and physical abuse. These abuses come from members of their own community, often from their own family, and from the state and police forces.
Upon arriving in Canada, they must navigate our immigration system with minimal resources, language skills and support. The entire future of these refugees is dependant upon one person’s decision at a single hearing. In many cases, individuals have spent their entire lives hiding their sexuality and often have little proof or documentation to support their claims.
Their journeys are usually made alone and in secret. Even in Canada, many are afraid of approaching ethnic enclaves from their home countries because prejudice beliefs are often not left at the border.
This portrait series looks at the emotional struggle and the isolation endured by each individual as they struggle with issues of their own identity in a new liberal society and the uncertainty of their futures within it.