Research Projects

The best way for policy makers (government), service providers (doctors, nurses, counsellors, community agencies, etc) as well as the media and general public to understand what patients experience while undergoing assisted fertility treatments/infertility is to hear their perspective.  Evidence based research has the potential to impact legislation, improve services and inform communities and individuals.

If you are interested in being part of a confidential and anonymous research study, please respond directly to the researcher listed below.


Publicly Funded IVF Services in Ontario

In December 2015 the government of Ontario introduced a new program that provides publicly-funded in vitro fertilization (IVF) services. To better understand the impact of this new program, a province-wide survey is being undertaken. The aims of the study are to gather feedback on how the program is working for clinicians and patients; to see if any improvements can be made; and to provide information about the program that could be useful to the government. This study is funded by TRIO Fertility and partner agencies within the fertility sector. The Applied Health Research Centre (AHRC) at St. Michael’s Hospital has been hired to collect and analyze the survey responses.

This is where you come in! If you are a patient who has received, are receiving or are still waiting for your publicly-funded IVF services in Ontario, or if you are an Ontario clinician who provides/supports IVF services or an administrator who works in an IVF clinic, we would love to hear from you. The information you provide will be anonymous and will remain confidential. You will not be asked for your name or other information that might identify you directly and your specific responses will not be reported in a way that might allow you to be identified indirectly.

If you have any questions regarding this study, or you encounter any technical difficulties with the survey, please contact Karen Spitzer (Study Coordinator) at kspitzer@triofertility.com or 416.506.9203

Patient’s Survey: https://survey.ca1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_0k36NVcOlFF6ijP
Service Provider’s Survey: https://survey.ca1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6ritct6OaqQPEcB


Participate in a Research Project: Contemporary LGBTTQ Family Conflict

In Canada, almost no research has been done on lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, two-spirit, queer (LGBTTQ) family conflict. I am a queer parent, a long-time LGBTTQ parenting researcher, educator and advocate, and a professional mediator of family and other conflicts.

I am looking for people:

  • Who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, two-spirit or queer (or elsewhere on the queer/trans spectrum),
  • Whose family or kinship configuration includes “get-go” kids, i.e. children who, from the “get-go,” were born or adopted into an LGBTTQ-led family,
  • Who have experienced a situation of conflict that has led to the breakdown or potential breakdown of a relationship with a partner, co-parent, sperm/egg donor or other significant person. This might include:
    • Custody or access issues related to separation
    • Conflicts involving sperm/egg donors, surrogates, intended parents
    • Conflicts between biological and non-biological parents
    • Conflicts in multi-parent families

Or: You are the “get-go” child of an LGBTTQ parent (and are currently over 18 years old) and your family experienced conflict.

This is a Canadian study. Interviews can take place in person in Toronto, Vancouver, Kingston and Ottawa, and via Skype in other locations. Accessible interview space, ASL available.

To find out more about the project, and/or participate, please contact: Rachel Epstein, Banting Postdoctoral Fellow, Brock University; 416 898 3549; conflictstudy@yahoo.com.

This study has been reviewed and received ethics clearance through the Research Ethics Board at Brock University [file #15-296]. If you have any comments or concerns about your rights as a research participant, please contact the Research Ethics Office at (905) 688-5550 Ext. 3035, reb@brocku.ca.


Participate in a Research Project: LGBTQ Child Custody Conflicts, 1960 – 1995

In Canada, almost no research has been done on lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, two-spirit, queer (LGBTTQ) family conflict. I am a queer parent, a long-time LGBTTQ parenting researcher, educator and advocate, and a professional mediator of family and other conflicts. I am interested in documenting lesbian, gay, bisexual, two-spirit and trans child custody conflicts from 1960-1995.

I am looking for people:

  • Who now identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, two-spirit or queer (or elsewhere on the queer/trans spectrum),
  • Who had children in a heterosexual relationship and were involved in a family conflict, custody dispute or court case between 1960 – 1995.

Or: You are the child of an LGBTTQ parent (and are currently over 18 years old), you were born into a heterosexual family and your family experienced conflict as the result of one parent identifying as LGBTTQ.

If you were involved in the work of the Lesbian Mothers’ Defence Fund anywhere in Canada, please get in touch.

This is a Canadian study. Interviews can take place in person in Toronto, Vancouver, Kingston and Ottawa, and via Skype in other locations. Accessible interview space, ASL available.

To find out more about the project, and/or participate, please contact: Rachel Epstein, Banting Postdoctoral Fellow, Brock University: 416 898 3549; conflictstudy@yahoo.com.

This study has been reviewed and received ethics clearance through the Research Ethics Board at Brock University [file #15-296]. If you have any comments or concerns about your rights as a research participant, please contact the Research Ethics Office at (905) 688-5550 Ext. 3035, reb@brocku.ca.