Among Syrian refugees, LGBT members are the most threatened. Being accused of homosexuality in Syria can mean a three-year jail term, which in reality can be a death sentence. And when LGBT Syrians flee to neighbouring countries, they face increased levels of threat and live in constant fear of people discovering what Ahmed Danny Ramadan, a guest of mine on the show recently, called their "secret". Danny is an author, journalist, LGBT activist, and Syrian refugee who came to Canada just over a year ago. For the first time in his life he has been able to live without fear. Please listen to this conversation on the link below and share. It is important to remember that behind the numbers we hear in the media are real human beings facing incredible hardships that most of us cannot even imagine.
Click here to read an article about how new Canadian Danny Ramadan is paying it forward by helping to sponsor his friend Rory to Canada.
To support Danny's efforts to bring Rory to Canada and help other LGBT Syrian refugees, please visit his page at GoFundMe by clicking here.
MUST READ - To read the recent Buzzfeed News article by J. Lester Feder "This Is What It's Like to Be an LGBT Syrian Fleeing for your life" please click here.
"Let’s talk numbers for a second: At the moment, and after four years of civil war and terrorism, there are about six million Syrian refugees displaced around the world. The neighbouring countries of Syria, namely Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon, host about five million Syrian refugees. Canada has opened its doors to a whopping number of 3,200 Syrian refugees, only 72 of which are in British Columbia. Out of those 72, and to my knowledge and without assumptions, there are five Syrian refugees who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans. I want you to take a moment to realize how small that number is in reference to the total number of Syrian refugees.
I want you to think about the double-layered threat that LGBT Syrian refugees around the world face: identifying as a sexual minority within a homophobic community, faced by a civil war, then becoming refugees in communities that are equally homophobic. Except for us five." - Danny Ramadan
As a followup: The interview with Danny Ramadan was heard online by the founder of an Jordan-based LGBT magazine, My.Kali. Khalid Abdel-Hadi was inspired by the words of Danny and after he reached out to us, I spoke to him. The interview is posted below.