Hey community – this is a little different from what we usually post, content warning for suicide.
Many of you will have heard by now about the recent death of Bekett Noble. They were a non-binary student who died by suicide at Redeemer University. This is a small statement to share some information about what happened, what’s happening now, and resources.
On November 23, Bekett died by suicide at Redeemer. They fought for years to increase supports and safety for Redeemer’s queer and trans students. They did the work that so many queer and trans students have been forced to take on, despite barriers, pushback, and hostility. You can learn more about Bekett and their fight for change at Redeemer through this Hamilton Spectator article.
On December 10 from 2-4pm, Bekett’s friends and family are holding a celebration of life for them at the Boston Pizza in Ancaster. All are welcome to attend Beckett’s celebration of life, but please understand that family and friends who knew and loved Bekett will be given priority inside the restaurant itself. If you didn’t personally know Bekett or their loved ones, you’re still welcome to attend in solidarity – bring your flags, your non-binary colours, and your love.
Additionally, Genesis (the queer group at Redeemer that Bekett started) has asked for donations in Bekett’s honour to be made to speqtrum, an incredible organization supporting 2SLGBTQIA+ youth here in Hamilton.
You can donate to them here.
On December 18 at 2pm, Free Mom Hugs Southern Ontario is holding a vigil and rally at Hamilton City Hall, to call on Redeemer University to #DoBetterforBekett. The posters for both Bekett’s celebration of life and the vigil and rally are available below.
We want to acknowledge that collectively as a community, this is painful and sad and difficult and there are no words that ever fully capture grief. Many of our coalition members and general trans and non-binary community members, have lost loved ones to suicide, and have experienced suicidal ideation themselves. It’s okay to be upset, overwhelmed, angry, scared, or anything else. You are not alone in this.
If you’re looking for trans specific supports and resources, please contact us. We know that we don’t have enough resources in Hamilton for queer and trans communities, but we will absolutely do our best to connect you with what’s available.
Finally, a brief rundown of some available peer and crisis supports:
- speqtrum offers an online check-in program for 2SLGBTQIA+ youth, as well as drop-in online peer support hours
- LGBT YouthLine provides text, chat, and phone peer support for 2SLGBTQIA+ youth across Ontario
- Trans Lifeline runs a peer and crisis hotline for trans and gender diverse people across North America in English and Spanish, the number to call from Canada is 877-330-6366
With so much trans love,
Hamilton Trans Health Coalition