Thanks for your interest in our research study “We’ve Survived Before: An Inter-generational, Youth-led Mental Health Intervention for LGBTQ+ Youth”. In this letter, we provide answers to questions we thought you may have about the study. Please review the information and let us know if you have any more questions. If you are still interested in participating, let us know!
Thanks for reaching out,
Erin and Nathan
Who is on the research team?
This research is led by Erin Fredericks from St. Thomas University and Nathan Thompson from Blockhouse Counselling. Ardath Whynacht from Mount Allison University, Stel Raven from Stel Raven Counselling, Kelly Baker from St. Thomas University, Rick Sharpe from St. Thomas University, and [insert undergraduate research assistant], are also on the research team. Partners for Youth and the Canadian Mental Health Association of Fredericton staff are also on the research team.
Erin Fredericks, Associate Professor
St. Thomas University
Certified Canadian Counsellor
Blockhouse Counselling and Psychotherapy Services
Office phone: 506-459-0225
What is the purpose of this study?
In this study we will discuss the mental health needs of queer, trans, and non-binary youth during COVID-19, meet with elders in our community to learn from how they survived the AIDS epidemic, discuss the strengths in our community, and develop a mental health program for other youth.
Who can participate?
As a young person between the ages of 18-20 in New Brunswick who self-identifies as queer, trans, or non-binary and has internet access, you are invited to participate in this research study.
If I participate, what will I do?
If you wish to participate in this study, you will be an active contributor, engaging in five online workshops in the spring and summer 2021, you may decide to contribute video, art or writing to the mental health program, and you will take part in final workshop in fall 2021. You will also complete a feedback form after each workshop.
What risks are there if I participate?
If you participate in this study, you will choose a fake name so you will be anonymous. However, some of this research will be done in group settings and, even when you use a fake name, you will probably not be able to remain anonymous within the group. Although we will ask everyone who takes part not to share information outside of the group, we also can’t promise that other participants won’t tell people outside the group that you are participating. You can decide which pieces of writing and art to share with the public, and whether or not you want your name on those pieces.
Talking about mental health can be difficult. Even if you don’t realize at the time, you may find that during or after a discussion you feel anxious, nervous, jumpy, numb, sad, or angry. We are here to support you if anything arises for you from these discussions. Please reach out to us at [project email] or [project phone number] and we will offer appropriate supports.
You may share personal information with us during the study. Although we will protect the feedback you give to us with care and safety, there are some secrets that are too heavy to carry on our own. This means that if we are worried about your safety in any way, we will secure the help of folks who are best trained to assist us in keeping you safe. This means that if you tell us you are being abused by an adult, we have to intervene. If you tell us that you want to harm yourself, we will find help to keep you safe. Your safety is of utmost importance to us. If you share information about abuse, self-harm, suicidality, or anything else that worries us, a member of our reserach team will reach out to speak to you. If we are worried about your immediate safety he will contact an emergency contact of your choice.
What are my rights as a participant?
You do not have to participate and if you choose to participate, you may refuse to attend workshops that you do not want to attend or refuse to take part in any activity. You can also withdraw from the study at any time. If you withdraw from the study, we can’t remove the information you already provided because you are part of group discussions, but if you leave before July 1st, 2021 you can remove your fake name from the study. We will remind you of your rights as a participant each time we meet.
What are the benefits of participating in this study?
We hope that participating in this study will give you a place to have new conversations about the mental health needs and strengths of the queer, trans, and non-binary community, and that doing so may be useful to you. Any original writing or artistic works that you produce and contribute as a result of this project will also remain yours to use in any way that you choose.
How will the researchers protect my information? And how will that information be used?
In workshops you will speak in a group with other participants and two members of the research team. These workshops will be recorded and then typed. You will use a fake name. Your real name and contact information will not be shared and will be kept in password protected files. Between workshops, you may email us or send writing or art. You can choose if you provide copies of those to us to use.
The information you provide in in workshops, and your writing or art will help us develop a mental health program for other queer, trans, and non-binary youth. It’s important you understand how we intend to use this information. Any information you choose to provide us will be used in research articles, reports, publications, and a mental health program plan that will be available for free online. When we use your information, we will provide a copy of the article or publication on our Facebook page for you to read.
Remember that even though we will protect your privacy, if you share information that makes us worry about your safety, we will follow-up with you and we may have to report this information to the authorities.
It sounds like I will be doing a lot. Do I get anything to cover the cost of participating?
At the beginning of each workshop you will be emailed a $25 electronic gift card. If you decide to withdraw from the workshop, or the study, you keep the money you have already received.
The plan for this study has been reviewed by a Research Ethics Board at St. Thomas University. If you have any questions regarding your rights as a research participant or how the research is being conducted you may contact the Research Ethics Office at firstname.lastname@example.org 506-452-0647.