Queer Yukon has released results from a survey that asked all the territory's federal candidates about issues impacting the 2SLGBTQ+ community.
The 10 questions were answered by all five candidates, and covered wide-ranging topics such as housing insecurity, policing and prisons, conversion therapy, and refugees in Afghanistan.
The survey was compiled by members of the organization's board of directors, including Mona Luxion, who is the board's president.
Overall, they said the organization was impressed with how thorough each of the candidates were with their answers.
"We really appreciated the time that they put in and the thoughtfulness," they said.
"I think it's really notable that our community is getting this much attention from candidates because that really hasn't always been the case."
Concern over conversion therapy response
Luxion said it was really encouraging to see that each candidate expressed the need for increased mental health support and services in the territory.
However, though the organization says it is not taking a partisan position in this election, Luxion said the group was "really concerned" about one of the answers they received.
Candidates were asked about Bill C-6, the federal bill that makes it illegal to subject a child to conversion therapy or an adult without their consent. The federal bill made it to the Senate in June, but was never approved because Parliament was dissolved when the election was called.
All candidates said they backed the bill, except for Independent candidate Jonas Smith. He called conversion therapy "abhorrent" but said he does not support the bill in its current form "due to its excessive government-overreach into parents' rights."
Conversion therapy is a widely discredited practice aimed at changing someone's sexual orientation, gender identity, and/or gender expression. The World Health Organization has said conversion therapy poses a "serious threat to the health and well-being" of those impacted.
Luxion said that it is pretty clear the community stands against conversion therapy, and that Smith's concern over parental rights is a non-starter.
"If you think conversion therapy is truly abhorrent … I don't think you can then say ... 'I don't want to infringe on a parent's right to impose it on a kid.' It just doesn't make any sense to me," they said.
You can read all the answers from all of the candidates here or below.
Other resources to help 2SLGBTQ+ voters
The survey is just one of the resources the organization has developed to help 2SLBTQ+ Yukoners vote in the federal election.
The organization is also offering support to trans, non-binary and two-spirit folks who are wanting to vote in the election. Staff are offering in-person and phone support for everything from heading to the polls to helping people update their names on the voter registry.
For more information on this people can visit this site, call 867-393-1299, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to regular business hours — weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.— staff will be on call on election day, Monday, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Read the Queer Yukon survey results: