Canada has issued a travel warning to its LGBT citizens planning to visit the United States. Anti-LGBT protests in the US have increased significantly, while legal measures to restrict LGBT rights are also on the rise. Global Affairs Canada did not specify which states may affect LGBT travelers, but the warning highlights the potential risks. Typically, such travel warnings are reserved for countries like Uganda, Russia, or Egypt.
The term 2SLGBTQI+ is widely used in Canada to encompass individuals who identify as two-spirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, or intersex. A spokesperson for Global Affairs Canada cited laws in the US targeting the transgender community as a reason for the travel warning. Some states have passed legislation that bans drag shows, restricts transgender access to gender-affirming care, and prohibits transgender participation in sporting events. For example, Tennessee and Florida have enacted laws banning drag performances in front of children and limiting medical treatment for transgender youth.
Conservative-run states across the US have proposed hundreds of similar regulations that impact LGBT issues. The Human Rights Campaign, the largest LGBT advocacy group in the US, has stated that LGBT Americans are facing a state of emergency due to the increasing legislative targeting.
Canadian Deputy PM Chrystia Freeland explained that the government utilizes experts to identify potential dangers to specific groups of Canadians when issuing travel guidance. However, she did not comment on whether there were discussions with the US government prior to the update.