Gay Straight Alliances (GSAs) are youth-led groups aimed at providing welcoming, inclusive opportunities for Two-Spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and all other sexual and gender minority (2SLGBTQ+) students and their allies to socialize and support one another.
To date there is no comprehensive historical record of GSAs in Alberta (or Canada, more broadly). This project aims to lay the foundations for such a record by speaking directly with those involved in Alberta GSAs from the early 2000s to the present.
Drawing upon elements of oral history and queer methodology, this project will explore the following themes:
- The establishment of GSAs across Alberta
- The focus of groups across their history and in relation to other GSAs
- The importance of GSAs to members
- Positive and negative aspects, effects, and experiences of the groups, both at present and as shared by past members and facilitators
- Important elements and ideas as identified by members and facilitators
As of Summer 2022, we have spoken with GSA facilitators in the Calgary and Southern Alberta regions, and past GSA members in the Edmonton, Calgary, and Southern Alberta regions.