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Gay Pride Flag Saskatchewan Resources for Sexual Diversity
Saskatchewan Resources for Sexual Diversity

Celebrating a History of Diversity:

Lesbian and Gay Life in Saskatchewan, 1971 - 2006
A Selected Annotated Chronology

The 1990s


1993 Regina
Oscar Wilde & Company, was established by Nils Clausson and Guy Michaud as a theatre company that would “give a voice to those in our society – gays, people with AIDS, street youth – who were either marginalized or found others speaking for them.” Many plays, including several written and/or directed by Michaud, have been presented including productions at Regina Pride celebrations, Cathedral Village Arts Festivals and at the Saskatoon Fringe Festival. The company still operates exists at the date of this compilation.
[Perceptions, v. 15 no. 5 (July 30 1997) p. 21.]
January 25 Saskatoon
The Saskatoon YMCA changed its ‘married couples’ rate to a ‘couples’ membership rate that included co-habiting same-sex couples after a request from Sheri McConnell who sought a family membership for her partner and herself.
[Perceptions, v.11 no. 2 (March 10 1993) p. 12.]
February 6 Calgary
An Angus Reid poll recorded that 52% of Albertans and 55% of Saskatchewan and Manitoba residents believed that gays and lesbians should be protected from discrimination.
[Calgary Herald, (February 6 1993) p. A1.]
February 16
SHRC chief Donna Greschner published a personal viewpoint in several newspapers advocating legislation to prohibit discrimination of the basis of sexual orientation.
[Donna Greschner, “Amendments important step towards equality,” Melfort Journal, (February 16 1993) p. 5.]
February 25 Regina
The throne speech announced the amendment of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Code. Bill 38 was introduced on March 17 to extend human rights protections to lesbians and gays.
[Randy Burton, “Throne speech promises renewal,” SSP, (February 26 1993) p. A1.]
February 25 - March 10 Saskatoon
Stephen and Mister Wilde poster Persephone Theatre presented the world premiere of Jim Bartley’s Stephen and Mr. Wilde, a speculative play based on the few facts known about Oscar Wilde’s visit to Toronto in 1882.
[“Play about Wilde boldly innovative,” SSP, (March 1 1993) p. D2.]
February 28 Saskatoon
The Bridge City Men’s Chorus gave their first public performance at Uriel’s fourth annual musical AIDS benefit at St. John’s Anglican Cathedral.
[Event flyer – SAB NR]
March Saskatoon
The SHRC decided that Your MLA Doesn’t Want You to Read This,a pamphlet mailed to 150,000 homes did not constitute hate literature. The pamphlet claimed that 95% of male homosexuals reported having over 1000 different sexual partners per year. At the time Section 14 of the Saskatchewan Human Rights Act prohibited the publication of material which exposed individuals or groups to hatred and ridicule or otherwise affronted their dignity.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 2 (March 10 1993) p. 10. / “Anti-gay rights letter reviewed,” RLP, (February 5 1993) p. A9.]
March 10
The Saskatchewan Association of Rural Municipalities annual convention opposed proposed human rights changes. One delegate objected to SARM’s intervention claiming they “should stick to rats, roads, grain, graders and railways.”
[“Rural politicians oppose homosexual rights plan,” SSP, (March 11 1993) p. C10.]
March 22 Saskatoon
Winnipeg lesbian artists Shawna Dempsey and Lorri Millan performed at the Rampant Marshmallow Meltdown cabaret presented by the AKA Artist Run Centre.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 2 (March 10 1993) p. 22.]
March 29
Saskatchewan’s Catholic bishops issued a joint pastoral letter which was seen as implicitly agreeing to proposed legislative changes to the province’s Human Rights Code. While reaffirming the Catholic Church’s position on homosexual activity as immoral the bishops wrote that human beings should be treated equally and that every mark of unjust discrimination against people with homosexual tendencies was to be avoided.
[“Dear Catholic People of Saskatchewan,” Prairie Messenger, vol. 70 no. 6 (April 5 1993) p. 3. / “Gays receive church support,” SSP, (March 27 1993) p. A1.]
April Weyburn
Ray Bailey, a former leader of the Western Canada Concept Party, helped to organize Speak Up Canada to oppose ‘the gay agenda.’ The group sponsored a protest rally of about 100 people in Weyburn.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 3 (April 21 1993) p. 12. / “Mitchell defends gay legislation,” RLP, (April 3 1993) p. A4.]
April 8 Regina
The executive council of the SFL voted unanimously to express public support for Bill 38.
[SFL Press Release April 8 1993 – SAB NR]
April 13-16 Saskatoon
The Moose Jaw Women in Education group submitted a resolution in support of spousal benefits for LG teachers to the spring council of the Saskatchewan Teachers’ Federation. The Moose Jaw Catholic Teachers’ Association presented a resolution in opposition. The Council voted to have the STF executive study the proposal and bring back a recommendation.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 3 (April 21 1993) p. 11. / “Gay teacher benefit issue handed back to executive,” SSP, (April 17 1993) p. A3.]
May 1 Saskatoon
The Bridge City Men’s Chorus presented their first concert Wine, Men & Song at the Terrace Room of the Bessborough Hotel as a benefit for GLHS and AIDS Saskatoon.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 3 (April 21 1993) p. 2.]
May 3 Regina
One hundred prayed at the Legislature for divine intervention to defeat Bill 38. During the following month ads opposing the bill were published in several newspapers and petitions were distributed calling for a referendum. Inside the Legislature a number of Conservative MLAs spoke about the sinfulness and unnaturalness of homosexuality.
[Randy Burton, “Govt may change bill on homosexual rights,” SSP, (May 4 1993) p. A2.]
June 6 Saskatoon
AIDS Saskatoon staged Prairie Walk ’93, the city’s first AIDS fundraising walk.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 3 (April 21 1993) p. 13.]
June 11 Moose Jaw
The Moose Jaw Times-Herald interviewed local lesbians and gays about life in ‘the Jaw.’
[Ted Wyman, “It’s tough to be gay in Moose Jaw,” Moose Jaw Times-Herald, (June 11 1993) p. 3.]
June 12 Regina
The United Church Saskatchewan Conference placed advertisements in Regina and Saskatoon dailies announcing its support for Bill 38 and its solidarity with gay and lesbian people: “The time for justice is always now!”
[RLP, (June 12 1993) p. A11.]
June 18-27 Saskatoon
Saskatoon presented its first Pride celebration in more than ten years. Events included an art exhibit at AKA Gallery, films at the Broadway Theatre, a Christian church service and the presentation of the city’s first GALA awards for LG community service.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 5 (July 28 1993) p. 5-6. / JoLynn Sheane, “Gay pride week first in decade, ”SSP, (June 23 1993) p. A6.]
June 19-20 Moose Jaw
It’s In To Be Out, the city’s first Pride event, featured a dance at the Elk’s Lodge and a picnic at Happy Valley Park.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 4 (June 9 1993) p. 12.]
June 22 Regina
Bill 38 was passed by a vote of 31-10 in the Saskatchewan Legislature. Saskatchewan became the seventh province to include sexual orientation in its human rights legislation. The bill was supported by thirty NDP members and the lone Liberal member and opposed by the ten member Conservative caucus. The Conservatives tried unsuccessfully to amend the legislation to prohibit gay adoptions, recognition of same-sex relationships, and access to spousal and family benefits.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 5 (July 28 1993) p. 11. / “Embattled gay rights bill passes,” RLP, (June 23 1993) p. A8.]
July Saskatoon
The SHRC negotiated an agreement with The Western Producer in which the farm paper ended its longstanding policy of rejecting classified ads that seemed to involve homosexuality. Complainant Jim Markow had tried to place an ad seeking “a buddy to share hiking, canoeing and northern outdoor activities.”
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 5 (July 28 1993) p. 12.]
July Regina
Hugh Owens, a Regina corrections officer, filed a complaint with the SHRC that the new human rights law had made the Bible hate literature. The Commission rejected the complaint.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 7 (October 27 1993) p. 11. / “Bible doesn’t violate code,” RLP, (August 26 1993) p. A12.]
July 22 Regina
Health Minister Louis Simard announced a program for anonymous HIV testing in Prince Albert, Regina and Saskatoon.
[Bill Doskach, “New AIDS policy adopted,” RLP, (July 23 1993) p. A3.]
August 8-14 Saskatoon
Dik Campbell presented Assume Your Position, a media/site-specific exhibition as part of series of public access works organized by AKA Artist Run Centre. Campbell’s project involved the creation and placement of artworks by the victims of gay bashings at the sites at which they had been attacked. A documentation of the project was later exhibited in March 1998 at the U of S Breaking the Silence conference.
[Project flyer – SAB NR]
September Saskatoon
GLHS received federal funding for a rural outreach program including a 1-800 number. The organization reported handling over 5,000 calls since the fall of 1992.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 7 (October 27 1993) p. 13.]
Average Good Looks, a Winnipeg visual artists’ collective, presented a month long advertising campaign in five prairie cities including Regina and Saskatoon. Billboards featured photos of individual gays and lesbians as well as same-sex couples with the caption “Gays & Lesbians, Your Family.”
[Gregg Beatty, “Art placed in the public eye,” RLP, (September 7 1993) p. C5.]
October Regina
The 1993 synod of the Anglican diocese of Qu’Appelle included a session on Christian understandings of lesbian and gay ordination. Several gays and lesbians described their lives in the church to the approximately 270 delegates.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 7 (October 27 1993) p. 10.]
October 2 Saskatoon
Numbers reopened at a new location in the Avenue Building at 110 – 220 Third Avenue South.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 6 (September 15 1993) p. 2.]
October 25 Saskatoon
Jim Stevenson died after a long battle with AIDS. As Miss K he helped to establish drag performances as gay entertainment in Saskatoon and raised much-needed funds for PLWA support.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 8 (December 8 1993) p. 14.]
November Saskatoon
Christopher Lefler, a graduate student in the U of S Art Department, included an installation work in Staging Identities, an exhibition at the University’s Gordon Snelgrove Gallery. The work included correspondence with a prominent official who he believed to be lesbian and who had labeled her responses personal and confidential. The Art Department removed the work and when Lefler replaced it, the University suspended him, withdrew his scholarship and banned him from campus. This attempt at political outing aroused much controversy but limited support in the LG community. The controversy continued in 1994 when Lefler was awarded $9,500 by the Saskatchewan Arts Board, which he said he would use to publish his correspondence with the official. Facing opposition attacks and public complaints NDP Minister Carol Carson initially defended the independence of the Arts Board but later asked it to reconsider the grant. The Arts Board eventually rescinded the grant claiming it had questions about the legality of Lefler’s project.
[Perceptions, v. 12 no. 2 (March 9 1994) p .6-7. / Perceptions, v. 12 no.4 (June 8 1994) p. 10. / “Outing outrages gays,” SSP, (February 17 1994) p. A3. / “University expels fine arts student for ‘defamatory’ art,” SSP, (May 17 1994) p. A3. / “Expelled student’s grant decried,” SSP, (May 18 1994) p. A12. / “Carson wants ‘outing’ artist’s grant pulled,” RLP, (May 26 1994) p. A4. / “Arts Board rescinds Lefler’sgrant,” SSP, (June 14 1994) p. A3. / Jim Russell, “A Gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,” Fuse Magazine, v. 18 no. 2 (1994) p. 7-10.]
November 19-21 Saskatoon
CLUB Saskatoon hosted A Gathering of the Clan II, a weekend of workshops and performances by Western Canadian leather men and friends.
[Perceptions, v. 11 no. 8 (December 8 1993) p. 13.]