LGBTQ+ resources

The Office of Intercultural Education (OIE) respects and welcomes students with expansive sexual & romantic orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions. Through our mission and programming efforts, the OIE affirms that ALL students have the right to feel welcomed and supported in our space and the college campus. The OIE actively recognizes that difference, in all of its forms, enriches our campus community and enhances the learning environment for every person.

The OIE continues to actively evaluate, update, and add to our programming, policies, and resources for LGBTQ+ students and allies based on student and community feedback. Below are some current local and global resources for regarding LGBTQ+ experiences.

This is NOT a comprehensive list. If you have questions, suggestions, or are looking for further resources or support, please contact

On-Campus Resources

Academic Courses

In many of Bates College’s academic departments and interdisciplinary programs, students are offered academic courses and programs that explore many different facets of sexuality and gender. Bates College offers a Gender and Sexuality Studies major and minor, as well as a Queer Studies General Education Concentration (GEC).

All-gender restrooms

In certain areas of the US, restrooms have and continue to be a place of harassment, discrimination, and threats of injury and arrest towards trans/nonbinary people.

An all-gender restroom, or gender neutral restroom, is a restroom that any person can use. These restrooms can benefit many different people including but not limited to families, differently abled persons, and trans/nonbinary individuals. All-gender restrooms provide an opportunity for our community members to enter a restroom without concern of being questioned or interrogated. During programs and events, it is helpful to remind participants of where all-gender restrooms are. Not sure where to find them, check out this ever-growing List of all-gender restrooms at Bates.

LGBTQ+ Active Ally Workshops

We believe that one of the most effective ways to create a truly inclusive campus is to build a strong and active network of allies. The OIE provides an LGBTQ+ Active Ally Workshop to provide the student community with introductory knowledge and understanding about LGBTQ+ identities and experiences. For more information click here.

Health Services and CAPS

Health Services provides LGBTQ+ students with on campus, judgment-free and supportive physical and mental health services.

Students who are seeking to or are currently transitioning, Health Services offers medical support for trans students through partnerships with local Lewiston medical services. To schedule an appointment, contact them at or call 207-786-6199.

CAPS provides free and confidential counseling/mental health services. To schedule an appointment, please contact or call 207-786-6200.

Title IX and Civil Rights Compliance

The Title IX and Civil Rights Compliance team is here to help. The Title IX team welcomes conversations with any Bates community member about gender or sexual respect. Students who have questions or want to learn more, do not hesitate connecting with Gwen Lexow, Associate Vice President for Title IX & Civil Rights Compliance/Title IX Coordinator at to learn more.

This is a confidential resource and support and the team will work with you about moving forward with reports should this be something you want to do.


Students are able to change their gender on their HouseCat application, regardless of the gender listed through the Registrar. Some campus locations have gender-neutral or single-user bathrooms associated with them, and some do not. A full list is available here. Students should factor this into their housing preferences and are encouraged to list this concern in their application. Housing application information is only used by the professional staff in our office and is not linked to any other database on campus.

All gender housing is available to all non-first-year students. Please read more on Residence Life’s Open Gender Housing Policy. First-year students are paired with other students that match their selected gender identity on the Housing Application.

While we expect all students to create a welcoming environment for all members of the Bates community, students who are open to living with gender non-binary, transitioning, or questioning students are encouraged to let their openness and welcoming spirit known to the Bates Office of Residence Life and Health Education in the Additional Information section.

LGBTQ+ programming

The OIE offers the SPARQ program. But there is student-led club that hosts regular meetings and programming for LGBTQ+ students called OutFront. Keep up to date with their programs and events by joining them on Bates Engage and/or following them on Instagram.

Also check out Bates Today and the College Events Calendar for list of various events from other campus partners.

LGBTQ+ Terminology

The LGBTQ+ community uses terms and labels as a way to describe and self-identify. Knowing how and when to use proper terms can be powerful. In addition, providing terms for those questions helps to provide a space for self-discovery and identity.

SPARQ is working on a document that will be used as a living document for the ever-growing list of identities and terms adopted by the larger LGBTQ+ community. Below are a few lists of LGBTQ+ terminology resources:

Inclusion and anti-discrimination Policies

Bates College believes in the transformative power of our differences. Therefore, it holds policies around discrimination, bias, and sexual misconduct that help to protect all students. In addition, Bates prescribes to one of the most inclusive policies around trans athletes.

Bates Policies

Athletics Trans Inclusion Guide

Off-Campus Resources

Local Maine Organizations:

Outright Lewiston/Auburn

Outright LA provides services and outreach for LGBTQ+ youth in the Lewiston/Auburn, offering a weekly drop-in support group for youth 22 and under. OutrightLA is a program of Western Maine Community Action.

Drop-In Address:
169 Pleasant Ave, Auburn Maine

Great Falls Pride (Lewiston-Auburn)

Great Falls Pride (formally Lewiston-Auburn Pride) is the local organization that bring the march every June Pride Month.
Connect with Great Falls Pride:

Equality Maine

Equality Maine is the oldest and largest statewide organization dedicated to creating a fair and just society for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer Mainers. Originally founded in 1984 by another name, and adopting its current name in 2005, EQ has over 35 years of advocating for the Maine LGBTQ+ community, supporting initiatives such as the Maine non-discrimination law in 2005.

Equality Community Center
15 Casco St, Portland, ME 04101
t: 207.761.3732

Maine Family Planning

Maine Family Planning staff provide compassionate, confidential health services, regardless of your gender identity or expression. Whatever decisions you make about your health, we listen and provide support without judgment.

Gender Affirming Healthcare Services at Maine Family Planning include:

  • Hormonal therapy & monitoring for trans people 18 years old & over
  • Onsite self-injection lessons for hormone injections
  • Referrals to specialty providers & community resources, including mental, behavioral, & medical providers
  • Yearly wellness visits, preventive care, birth control & safer sex supplies, STD testing & treatment, and abortion for patients of any gender

179 Lisbon St.
Lewiston, ME 04240
Book an appointment online here.

PFLAG: Portland, ME chapter

The Portland, ME PFLAG chapter offers support and guidance for caregivers who are or who take care of LGBTQ+ individuals.

15 Casco Street
Portland ME 04101

Online/global resources:

Harm reduction/prevention support