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About Us

   
 

 

LEGIT, 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.

As 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.

From 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.

After 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.

 


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