The University of Regina is opening a new residence this fall specifically for LGBTQ students and their allies.
The Colourful Campus House has two six-bedroom apartments in the College West building.
“The need is real,” said Executive Director of UR Pride, Jacq Brasseur, who identifies as neither male nor female and goes by pronouns they and them.
There’s a housing award available for one of the 12 students accepted into the Colourful Campus House.
Brasseur said this is because LGBTQ members are more likely to experience poverty. Once someone comes out to their parents or their parents find out, they tend to cut off living finances.
“There’s a uniqueness to that experience,” they explain, that makes LGBTQ members in need of financial help.
Brasseur lived on campus at the U of R in 2013 and 2014.
“I was automatically placed with a group of women because that’s what it says on my ID,” they said. “We know the stress of ‘How am I gonna come out to six roommates that I’ve never met before?'”
“There’s just a lot of this fear about coming into a space where people from tons of different experiences are coming together to live in a space–a very close-quartered space,” Brasseur said, emphasizing the need for a supportive living environment for the LGBTQ community.
They said the idea for the Colourful Campus House began when UR Pride found out up to 70 per cent of college students in the U.S. and Canada feel administrators at their schools don’t know enough on LGBTQ issues.