Who we are
AGIR Montréal (Action LGBTQIA+ avec les ImmigrantEs et RéfugiéEs) is an autonomous non-profit organization, by and for the LGBTQIA+ migrant community living in Montreal.
Overall, AGIR’s mission is to protect and defend the legal, social, and economic rights of migrants (asylum seekers, refugees, immigrants, and those with undetermined status) from lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer (LGBTQIA+) communities through support services to support their settlement into communities and group and social activities to overcome social exclusion.
Specifically, our work aims to provide LGBTQIA+ migrants and refugees in need of:
- Services to support their settlement into the community through:
- Individual Support Services to assess and refer their needs in the areas of housing, interpretation, social services, employment, education, or to whatever appropriate services if necessary;
- Group Support Services to help them overcome social exclusion and isolation through capacity building and community building
- Social Activities to help them overcome social exclusion and isolation through capacity building and community development initiatives;
- Receive donations and distribute basic necessities or amenities of life that most people take for granted (like food cards, clothing donation distributions, etc. according to our capacity)
- Education and Public Awareness work that strives to change systemic practices that exclude, harm or even result in differential treatment towards LGBTQ+ migrant and refugees
Our By-and-for Approach
To accomplish our mission, AGIR works through a by-and-for approach, which means that people with lived experience as LGBTQIA+ migrants and refugees are not only at the center of our work, but also leading it. This model enables us to be uniquely responsive to evolving community needs across the diverse identities within the community.
- We believe everyone deserves to live a life free of violence, threat, fear and coercion.
- We believe that everyone is equal regardless of their migrant status.
- We believe in social, political and economic rights for all migrants.
- We believe all types of families have the right to stay together.
- We are aware of and working against systems of intersecting oppressions, including, but not limited to, patriarchy, misogyny, racism, colonialism, xenophobia, ableism, classism, heterosexism, cissexism, transphobia, homophobia, etc.
How We Work
We apply an anti-oppressive, non-judgmental and person-centered approach. We cultivate a respectful, inclusive, and welcoming environment where everyone feels safe(r) and secure. We build community with the participation of LGBTQ+ migrants. Our decision-making process informed and guided by the experiences and needs of LGBTQ+ migrants. We apply the principles of consensus-based decision-making and community organizing. We respect and value all individuals’ journeys, skills, knowledge and contributions. We are committed to working in solidarity with organizations and groups that can help us achieve our vision. We are accountable to our members, collaborators and allies.
AGIR was born in 2008 during the collective dialogue of various members from the MultiMundo Coalition, a coalition of ethnic and racialized LGBTQ organizations (and their allies), who worked to address the issues LGBTQ ethnic and racialized communities (GLAM, Helem, Ethnoculture, Arc-en-ciel d’Afrique, etc.). It was officially an Association in 2009 and transitioned into a non-profit organization in 2011.
Currently, AGIR is run by a small team of 10-20 Montrealers, including a working board of directors, support team volunteers and a support coordinator and a training coordinator.
Code of Ethics
This code of ethics is intended for AGIR personnel (board members, employees, interns, volunteers, etc.) with respect to relationships with each other and those accessing AGIR services/programs.
- I adhere to and promote AGIR’s mission, objectives, basis of unity and this code of ethics
- I will adhere to all AGIR policies, procedures and guidelines
- I will follow through on my responsibilities to AGIR and fulfill my duties to the best of my ability
- I will communicate with AGIR as soon as I notice that I cannot fulfil my duties
- I will respect all AGIR personnel in addition to AGIR members and anyone accessing our services/programs
- I will participate in building an inclusive and welcoming environment within AGIR
- I will not harass (physical, sexual, psychological) or discriminate on the grounds of race, gender, class, religion, age, ethic origin, sexual orientation or gender identity
- I will endeavour to be anti-oppressive and nonjudgemental towards others
- I will strive to represent AGIR in an accurate and responsible manner
- I will maintain confidentiality by not divulging personal information that I have access to from my affiliation with AGIR (refer to AGIR policies)
- I will not engage in sexual relations with individuals that AGIR is supporting
- I will not use my role at AGIR as a means of intimidation, coercion or any other abuse of power over others
We are here in Tio’tia:ke (colonially known as Montreal) on the unceeded territory of the Kanien’kehá:ka. The Kanien’kehá:ka, also known as the Keepers of the Eastern Door, are one of the nations that make up the Haudenosaunee Confederacy here on Turtle Island (North America). The two closest Indigenous communities to us are Kahnawake and Kanesatá:ke.
As refugees and migrants, we are settlers to this land. We commit to continue learning and unlearning about Indigenous history and present realities, educating ourselves, and supporting Indigenous thrival. We encourage you to continue educating yourselves too on this learning journey and learn how to better act in solidarity with the Indigenous communities close to you.
We continue to work on what it means for us to be striving to decolonisation as an organisation and as individuals. Learn more about the land you are on and have been on here: http://native-land.ca/.
2018 Annual Report (Bilingual)
Thank you to all our supporters!
AGIR is funded the ministère de l’Immigration, de la Francisation et de l’Intégration, the Ministère de la Santé et des services sociaux, the Bureau de Lutte Contre l’homophobie et transphobie, and the City of Montréal.