the Lesbian and Gay Immigration Taskforce, was
founded in December 1991 in Vancouver, Canada
by a group of Canadian lesbians and gay men along
with their partners who did not have landed immigrant
status in Canada. Since then, LEGIT has expanded
across the country.
a grassroots lobby and support group, LEGIT provides
immigration information and support to queer,
lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered people
while working to end discrimination in Canada's
immigration regulations. The group has successfully
helped thousands of couples in cross-border relationships
gain permanent residence in Canada. Since 1991,
LEGIT has lobbied for changes to immigration process,
policies and law.
1993 to 2002, same-sex partners of Canadian citizens
and permanent residents applied under the skilled-worker
class and asked for consideration on humanitarian
and compassionate (H&C) grounds. The process worked
but it was only accessible to those who knew about
the "backdoor" procedure. Status was
granted on a case-by-case basis at the discretion
of individual immigration program managers.
a decade of lobbying for Citizenship and Immigration
Canada (CIC) to end discrimination against our
families, same-sex partners were officially recognized
as part of the Family Class on June 28, 2002.
While LEGIT celebrates this positive change in
the Canadian Immigration Act, there is still much
work to be done to ensure that the immigration
process is, in practice, equal and accessible.
Contact us for ways
you can help in this work.
In December 2003, the B.C. Human Rights Coalition and the United Nations Association presented the Renate Shearer Award to LEGIT and The Rainbow Refugee Committee for outstanding contributions in the field of human rights, notably for work towards ending discrimination of same-sex couples immigrating to Canada, and in assisting refugees who have experienced persecution due to their sexual orientation, HIV status, or gender identity.