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Safe Spaces

LGBT Purge


"Between the 1950s and mid-1990s, LGBT members of the Canadian Armed Forces, the RCMP and the federal public service were systematically discriminated against, harassed and often fired as a matter of policy and sanctioned practice.  In what came to be known as the 'LGBT Purge', people were followed, interrogated, abused and traumatized.

The LGBT Purge was implemented at the highest levels of the Government of Canada and was carried out with callous disregard for the dignity, privacy and humanity of its victims. With its roots in the Cold War, the Canadian Government’s LGBT Purge continued for over forty years.

An estimated 9,000 lives were devastated over those years, and the irreparable psychological trauma continues to this day.  The careers and self-esteem of a generation of young people were destroyed; victims were denied benefits, severance, pensions and opportunities for promotion if they managed to keep their jobs.  This shameful period in Canadian history also resulted in suicide, HIV, fear, depression, PTSD, addiction, disownment, criminalization, rejection, isolation, erasure and many other enduring and painful experiences." ( source -LGBT Purge Fund )



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