Tobi Hill-Meyer

Family Time

Filed By Tobi Hill-Meyer | December 21, 2010 12:30 PM | comments

Filed in: Living
Tags: COLAGE, queerspawn

This short film put together by COLAGE and media artist Jen Gilomen documents the past twenty years of organizing and activism by people with LGBTQ parents.

Their interwoven stories reflect social changes through personal experiences with the political, legal, and social elements that most mark the LGBTQ movement. Family Time was funded by a generous grant from the Creative Work Fund. Coming in 2011: the multi-media timeline exhibit portion of Family Time!

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Colage is a wonderful organization filling a very important need. I still think they're, in general, less than effective when it comes to the children of trans people and they've only even approached trans issues in the past year. There are a lot of challenges unique to having trans parents which Colage has recently tried to start addressing with their 'Kids of Trans' materials, but is still falling short. They haven't really figured out how to do outreach in the trans community and, especially, how to get kids to want to participate. Moreover, they still aren't addressing the needs of kids who are in truly combative situations where trans parents are denied real access to their children (and how that impacts those kids' lives). It's not just like gay/lesbian families only 'more so'... it's an entirely different kind of issues. Still, I'm really glad Colage is there and, even though my daughter wouldn't go near them (we've tried) they're doing much needed work.

In fairness, the kids of trans program was happening at least as far back as when I joined the board four and half years ago, and I think a few years before that. It's just been small and slow to grow. Additionally, some of the problems you're identifying are the same or similar kinds of barriers that we face in organizing any group of COLAGErs. But I definitely acknowledge the shortcomings in addressing multiple under served populations, including folks with trans parents.

I'd be happy to hear any suggestions (perhaps via email) you'd have for what kind of changes would need to be made to address the situation better. We've got a set of goals already being focused on, and especially right now money is always and issue, but regardless it's important to always be improving our understanding of the problem.

Regan DuCasse | December 21, 2010 7:35 PM

I recognize a few of the kids and their parents from the documentary "All Aboard! Rosie's R Family Cruise".
Hope Steinman-Iacullo was in it with her two dads.
She's a mini me. I looked just like her as a teen, freckles and all.

With the way the internet affords opportunity for a greater outreach and more independent (therefore accurate) reporting on the needs of the LGBT, perhaps what started out as slow for COLAGE and who it includes, might accelerate.
I certainly hope so.

I dunno, perhaps it might be a sign of progress, that there is more acceptance and therefore less need the way there used to be?
If that's not true for transgender parents and their kids, I won't dispute it. Just wondering if it is for gay parents?
Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Dear Gina,

COLAGE recognizes that we always must do more in terms of outreach and media representation.
Here is what we have done so far:
Our one-of-a-kind fellowship for a person with Trans parents has been around for five years. Monica, who wrote the groudnbreaking Kids of Trans Guide, has been present at countless conferences including IFGE, Southern Comfort, and many others specifically to work with Trans parents and their children - often to heal relationships. COLAGE youth, we are youth-driven, have been involved in many ordinances and legislative battles to ensure non-discrimination based on gender expression and identity. We were a part of the United Enda group from the start. Please keep your feedback coming. We're working on a new website so its a great time for constructive feedback.

COLAGE is a wonderful group with some of the most caring individuals possible involved in the org. I loved the video.