The Trans Fund is intended to serve as an immediate and individualized form of support for members who self-identify as transgender and/or nonbinary. If you identify as in the group this fund intends to serve and have constructive feedback, and/or are interested in participating on the Local’s Equity Funds Committee, write to your Secretary-Treasurer at email@example.com.
The Local’s Equity Funds Committee (anonymously) reviews applications for the Survivors Fund, Trans Fund, International Legal Workers Fund, and Black and Indigenous Workers Fund. The Secretary Treasurer, Vice-President, President/President’s designate, and ideally, 2 community members per fund for Unit 1, and 1 community member per fund for Unit 7, sit on this committee.
This is a member-driven fund that came out of members’ needs, and was specifically modeled on the CUPE 3903 Sexual Assault Survivor Fund.
Who is eligible to apply to the fund?
Each year of the Trans Fund (1 September – 31 August), anyone who meets the following criteria is eligible to apply:
- You have secured at least 1 hour of Unit 7 work by the time the application is made, or have a guaranteed subsequent appointment.
- You self-identify as transgender and/or nonbinary.
What expenses are eligible for reimbursement?
Understanding that your experience as transgender and/or nonbinary can impact many areas of life, the fund deliberately does not define all eligible expenses. Members are invited to submit claims for any expenses they consider eligible.
Examples of eligible expenses include:
- Everyday life necessities, including binders, shapewear, and packers.
- Medical necessities not covered by Green Shield, such as HRT prescriptions not listed in Green Shield’s index of covered pharmaceuticals.
- Gender-affirming procedures and surgeries, and associated travel, lodging, and transportation costs.
- Related counselling fees in excess of what is covered by Green Shield.
- Administrative fees associated with change of name ($137), re-issuing of passport ($120 for the 5yr, $160 for the 10yr), etc.
- Emergency relocation to secure safe housing, including moving fees, first and last month’s rent, hotel stays, etc.
Expenses incurred in the fund year (1 September – 31 August) will be eligible for reimbursement.
How much money will I get?
There is an annual cap of $1,500 per member per fund year, and a lifetime cap of $5,000 per member.
The fund year turns over on 1 September, so it is possible to maximize benefits by submitting two back-to-back applications, one in August and the other in September.
When will I get my money?
Equity Fund review meetings in Winter 2023 are scheduled on February 2, February 24, March 24, and April 21.For your application to be considered at one of these meetings, it must be received at least one day in advance. We will do our best to accommodate last-minute applications, but this cannot be guaranteed. We aim to mail disbursement cheques to eligible applicants within two weeks of approval.
How will disbursement decisions be made?
Applications will be reviewed and eligibility decisions made on a case-by-case basis by the Equity Funds Committee. The Equity Funds Committee is comprised of the Secretary-Treasurer, the President (or designate), the Vice-Presidents of any Unit with Equity Funds, and members reps from the constituencies each Equity Fund represents (currently two Unit 1 representatives and one Unit 7 representative per fund), to be appointed by the Executive Committee after a call for applications.
The Secretary-Treasurer chairs meetings of the Equity Funds Committee, presenting an anonymized and paraphrased version of each application to the committee for review. No other officer or member of the Local has access to Equity Fund applications.
How do I apply?
If you have worked 1+ hour since 1 September of the fund year, the application form will be available online and accessible through the Union’s website. To find the application, login to the Member Portal (found by scrolling up to the top right of this page), and select the ‘Forms’ tab.
A complete application for the fund will include:
- Political membership — you must have signed a membership card or filled out a Membership Application Form. (If you do not have a CUPE No. (found on the left-hand side of the Portal home page), then you have yet to gain political membership. To do so, select the ‘Forms’ tab and fill out the Membership Application Form PLEASE NOTE: processing membership applications can take up to one hour.)
- The Trans Fund Application Form.
- Supporting documentation — this documentation should include a statement outlining the need for which funding is being requested, and any other supporting documentation you may have (receipts, invoices, letters of support, etc.).
You will receive an automatic confirmation email for each application you submit. PLEASE NOTE: if you do not receive a confirmation email you did not successfully submit the application. If you experience any issues during the application process, please see the Fund Application FAQ for answers to commonly asked questions.
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. The fund year is 1 September – 31 August. The fund cap per person per year resets every year.
Workers’ rights, benefits, and health care
CUPE 3902, Unit 7 members’ protections under the Collective Agreement (CA) for Trans members:
- four month’s paid “Surgery, Hospitalization, and Serious Illness” leave which can be used for gender-affirming surgeries and procedures and/or mental-health purposes (p. 57)
- “physical attributes” and “sexual orientation, identity, and expression” added to grounds protected from discrimination (p. 7)
- right to determine your own gender identity and pronoun (p. 8)
- bullying and harassment protection (p. 13)
CUPE 3902, Unit 7 members’ access to relevant healthcare:
- Mental health care (counselling/MSW/social worker, incl. psychotherapy): $2500/year under top-up plan + $500 under base plan (total: $3000)
- Basic dental: $1350/year
- Glasses/contact lenses/laser eye surgery: $225/year
- Family HCSA: $600/year
- Drug max: $15K/year
- Health plan combined max: $15K/year