New Resources Available to Increase Inclusivity & Acceptance in Canada’s Places of Worship from Rainbow Faith and Freedom

TORONTO, March 11, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Rainbow Faith and Freedom (RFF)’s Worshipping With Love research project, the first phase of the organization's Ending Religious-based 2SLGBTQ+ Discrimination in Canada: Faith Sector Awareness and Education Program, provided a clear understanding of the relationship between places of worship and the queer community. With the support of the Government of Canada’s Women and Gender Equality (WAGE) grant, important research is helping to better address and take on religious-based 2SLGBTQ+ discrimination and exclusions.

Among the shocking findings:

- 54% of 2SLGBTQ+ people have experienced homophobia or transphobia in their place of worship
- 44% of respondents aged 18 to 24 report that religion has been used as a justification for homophobia or transphobia directed at them or someone in their presence

The second phase of this project, Beyond Tolerance: Understanding and Promoting 2SLGBTQ+ Inclusivity in Ontario’s Places of Worship, seeks to provide houses of worships of all faiths with tools and resources to incorporate inclusion into their congregations and communities.

This training is meant to serve as a guide for places of worship that want to be or are in the process of becoming 2SLGBTQ+ affirming and is divided into three modules.

These modules include Understanding Faith-Based 2SLGBTQ+ Discrimination, From Exclusion to Inclusion: Mixed Messaging and the Dangers of Uncertainty, and Towards Affirmation: Promising Practice for 2SLGBTQ+ Inclusion. Through these three modules, this training will explain what faith-based 2SLGBTQ+ discrimination is and why it’s significant; the prevalence of faith-based homophobia and transphobia in Ontario; and the experiences of faith-based 2SLGBTQ+ discrimination in place of worship.

Beyond that, these modules will explore the spectrum of exclusion and inclusion, the differences between explicit and implicit homophobia and transphobia, and passive versus active inclusivity, before providing key practices for responding to and combatting interpersonal homophobia and transphobia; overcoming barriers to inclusivity using real life examples; and taking the first steps to becoming a 2SLGBTQ+ affirming place of worship.

These tools and resources are now/will soon be available to places of worship of any faith across Ontario/Canada.

An executive summary of the Phase I research is attached to this release.

Rainbow Faith and Freedom (RFF) is a Toronto-based charity that directly confronts and works to end religious-based discrimination to make the world safer for 2SLGBTQ+ people and their allies. To do this, RFF advocates to change the hearts and minds of religious communities to be affirming and inclusive of 2SLGBTQ+ people and their allies.

A video accompanying this announcement is available at 


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