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Reclaiming Our Time Conference creates platform for unheard voices

Credit: CHAD GOPAUL

Fanshawe's Reclaiming Our Time Conference explores the acceptance and understanding of the LGBTQ2+ community.


Emma Fairgrieve | Interrobang | News | March 15th, 2019




Fanshawe's Reclaiming Our Time Conference is giving marginalized students an opportunity to reclaim their time and use their voice to discuss issues that they have faced at Fanshawe or in the London community.

The event will take place on March 29 from 8:30 a.m., to 4:30 p.m. in Fanshawe's Alumni Lounge and Student Centre.

The conference is open to Fanshawe College faculty, staff and students, while refreshments and lunch provided.

A student panel sharing lived experiences at Fanshawe College and in the London community will take place, as well as two breakout sessions and workshops.

Fraser Brown, Fanshawe's peer support, sexual violence and student life administrative assistant said the event is for students to bring to light issues they face in the community.

“It's giving students of the LGBTQ2+ community, as well as community members, a look at the inside it what some students have experienced in hopes to draw attention to issues that a lot of people aren't aware that happen both on campus and in the community,” Brown said.

The conference will feature keynote presentations from internationally recognized speakers. However the main focus is still to allow students to express their concerns and tell their story.

“From having this conference we are hoping that students will have their voice heard,” Brown said. “Possibly see some change happening in the community as well too. We have different community members being represented.”

Many marginalized groups feel as though their voices get lost in our current political climate, but according to Brown, Reclaiming Our Time is aiming to address students complaints that may have not been addressed in the past.

“I think it's important for us to have the voice and really give the statement that we are here. We have made so much progress but there is still so much progress to be made,” Brown said. “For example, we do have equal marriage rights, but there are still challenges to that like we have seen down in the United States. There is still a lot of transphobia highlighted. So often times we see the “T” not as much represented in the LGBTQ2+ community.”

The name “Reclaiming Our Time” also has some LGBTQ2+ roots.

The phrase “Reclaiming My Time” was famously quoted (multiple times) by U.S. representative Maxine Waters during a hearing when Steven Mnuchin, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, kept talking over her in a hearing. Waters said the quote “Reclaiming My Time. What he (the chairman) failed to tell you was when you're on my time I can reclaim it”. This phrase has in away become part of LGBTQ2+ culture.

If you are interested in this event please email Fraser Brown at f_brown@nullfanshawec.ca for a guaranteed spot. The event is expected to fill up quickly.
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