Key Area:

LGBTQIA+ Refugees & People Seeking Asylum

In 2020, Pride Foundation Australia began our focus on the Key Area of LGBTQIA+ refugees and people seeking asylum in Australia. 

LGBTQIA+ refugees and people seeking asylum in Australia face unique challenges accessing community and settlement support that is both affirming of their gender and/or sexuality and culturally appropriate. Since queer refugees and people seeking asylum are often doing so from countries and cultures that are not accepting of LGBTQIA+ identities, they often struggle to find a sense of belonging and community within their own diaspora and the Australian queer community. 

There is very little funding—government or otherwise—to improve the conditions of settlement and support for LGBTQIA+ refugees and asylum seekers.

Partner organisations

Our knowledge in this area is significant, but there are many groups that have real expertise and lived experience, and we want to work with them in partnership. Groups we are already collaborating with include…

Advisory committee

MAY 2019 TO PRESENT

Ruth McNair (Chair, PFA), Dennis Altman (Patron PFA), Sarina Jackson (PFA), Peter Waters (PFA), Liz Rickman (ALMA), Amber Loomis (LGBTI Health Australia), Renee Dixson (Forcibly Displaced People Network FDPN), Ian Seal and Manu Kailom (Three Coloured Sky), Alastair Lawrie, Sophie de Rohan (Refugee Immigration Legal Centre VIC), Alison Ryan and Ben Lumsdaine (Refugee Advice and Casework Service RACS NSW), Margherita Coppolino (National Ethnic Disability Alliances), Azlan Petra (Democracy in Colour), Olivia Coljar (Ishar Multicultural Women’s Health Service WA), Emily Drew (Multicultural Australia QLD), Meryl Jones (Mater Refugee Health Service QLD), Satrio Nindyo Istiko (QLD), Julian Punch (Rainbow Communities Tasmania Inc. Organisation with special reference to the LGBTIQ+ Asylum Seeker Group from the 72 Countries that Execute, Imprison, Persecute and Torture), Heather Grace Jones (STARTTS NSW), Toni Maldari (Refugee Health Service SA), Frances Rush (ASC NSW), Greg Storer (ASRC VIC).

Our work thus far

Watch these videos from partner organisations on the work we’ve completed around LGBTQIA+ Refugee & Asylum Seekers in Australia, including Tiko and Elfaz, from Third Queer Culture, former co-founder Tina Dixson and current founder Renee Dixson of Forcibly Displaced People Network, and Ine Bereens from Migration Council Australia.

Funding granted to groups advocating for LGBTQIA+ Refugee & Asylum Seeker

Forcibly Displaced People Network

2022

$5,000 To support the work of the Peer led LGBTIQ refugee and asylum seeker support group in Canberra.

2020

$20,000 grant to develop an online training resource on LGBTIQ refugees and asylum seekers for settlement services and LGBTIQ organisations. Available at:
www.fdpn.org.au/lgbtiq-settlement-training

Three For All

2022

$20,000 to employ an other-gendered refugee/asylum-seeker to work alongside their Peer Support Officer at the Queer Asylum Seekers support group.

2021

$5,000 To support the work of the Peer led LGBTIQ refugee and asylum seeker support group in Melbourne.

Multicultural Youth Advocacy Network (MYAN)

2021

$20,000 = $10,000 from Pride Foundation Australia and $10,000 from Sidney Myer Trust—joint grant round.

To develop a national survey and consultation to explore to specific settlement experiences and subsequent needs of young LGBTQIA+ refugees and asylum seekers in Australia.

Refugee Advice & Casework Service

2020

LGBTIQA+ Refugee Inclusive Practice Training for Community Workers and Legal Workers.

Migrant Resource Centre Tasmania, Working It Out and AGMC

2020

$20,000 = $10,000 from Pride Foundation Australia and $10,000 from Sidney Myer Trust—joint grant round.

To co-design ‘Safer Together,’ a guide to Australian law relating to LGBTQIA+ anti-discrimination and health rights, which will be translated into 15 languages and recorded as audio files. 

Asylum Seekers Centre

2020

$5,000 To support the work of the Peer led LGBTIQ refugee and asylum seeker support group in Sydney.

Academic Publications

BRIEFING DOCUMENT ON CONTEMPORARY ISSUES FOR REFUGEES AND PEOPLE SEEKING ASYLUM WHO HAVE DIVERSE SEXUAL ORIENTATION, GENDER IDENTITY AND EXPRESSION, AND SEXUAL CHARACTERISTICS (SOGIESC)

DEC 2019

Presented to the LGBTI Parliamentary Friends, Canberra 
Co-Chairs
Mr Warren Entsch MP, Mr Graham Perrett MP and Senator Janet Rice
By Associate Professor Ruth McNair AM, Chairperson Pride Foundation Australia. On behalf of The Pride Foundation Australia LGBTIQA+ advisory group

Online Training: Building service capacity to work with LGBTIQ+ forcibly displaced people

NOV 2021

This training module has been created in partnership with Meridian, an ACT-based LGBTIQ+ peer-led organisation, BridgeMeals, Melbourne-based community group for LGBITQ+ refugees and migrants, Migration Council of Australia a national non for profit supporting better outcomes for migrants and refugees and ANU Centre for Digital Humanities Research. The creation of this module was possible thanks to a grant from the Pride Foundation Australia.

Join our sub-fund

Community Sponsorship is a proven method to enable safe settlement through arrangement of a humanitarian visa in a transition country, safe passage to the host country, and local community support for at least the first year. We’re working to build the financial and people resources of the LGBTIQ+ refugee sponsorship sub-fund.