The past couple of weeks have hit our community hard. Black transgender women and gender nonconforming youth of color face disproportionately high rates of violence and murder. In Louisiana, we have lost three members due to violence. Chyna Gibson. Jaquarrius Holland. Ciara McElveen. Trans lives matter. Black trans lives matter. These trans lives matter.
Today we saw the Supreme Court reverse Gavin Grimm’s case based on President Trump’s decision to rescind U.S. Departments of Education and Justice guidelines for what a public school’s responsibilities are to transgender students under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972.
Revoking this guidance is indicative of this administration’s disregard for transgender youth and the many challenges they face. We are now seeing the real legal impact of the new policies, and this sends an alarming message that bullying, harassment, and violence are okay.
This administration’s needless steps to rescind the guidance are tantamount to telling transgender youth, in the eyes of the government, they are not welcome in their schools and are not worthy of the equal treatment and fairness afforded to all other students.
Attorney General Jeff Landry inserted Louisiana into this fight by signing onto the hideous lawsuit suing the federal government based on these guidelines. All of these actions absolutely threaten the ability of transgender citizens to live their lives openly and safely.
We want ALL Louisianans to know that we are here, we care and will continue to fight for ALL.
We must stand in solidarity with one another and be a visible force in our communities, so we can help increase our safety.
Here are some resources and programs that are available in the Greater New Orleans area:
BreakOUT!’s programming for building power and ending criminalization of trans youth of color, including peer support: www.youthbreakout.org
Trans Defense Fund for legal name change/ gender change/ other legal support: https://youthbreakout.kindful.com/?campaign=255097
New Orleans Carpool Collective is a way for people to volunteer for safe transportation for people, including transgender youth, to and from membership meetings, etc. https://www.facebook.com/carpoolneworleans/ or firstname.lastname@example.org
Transitions Louisiana is hosting a Townhall this Friday: https://www.facebook.com/events/795931503889571/
With Equality for All,
Executive Director, Forum for Equality