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University of Waterloo Limits Science Position to “Women, Transgender, Non-Binary, or Two-Spirit” Persons

Canada’s University of Waterloo is in the news this week after advertising for applications of a science position but limiting consideration to “qualified individuals who self-identify as women, transgender, non-binary, or two-spirit.” The school’s Faculty of Environment posted an announcement seeking applications for a PhD-level scholar in “geography, earth and/or environmental science and sustainability, planning or a related discipline” who has “evidence of an active research program with emphasis on climate and/or climate change science, water science and sustainability, or future cities.”The announcement contains the usual criteria on showing promising research and ability to attract external funding. It also adds this criteria: “This call is open only to qualified individuals who self-identify as women, transgender, non-binary, or two-spirit.”Some may be unfamiliar with the “two-spirit” identification. The conservative site College Fix includes this description:

According to LGBTQ Health.ca, a two-spirit person is one who “identifies as having both a masculine and a feminine spirit.” The term was coined in 1990 by Myra Laramee at the Third Annual Inter-tribal Native American, First Nations, Gay and Lesbian American Conference.

“Two-spirit” also may include “same-sex attraction and a wide variety of gender variance, including people who might be described in Western culture as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transsexual, transgender, gender queer, cross-dressers or who have multiple gender identities,” the site states.

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