Three Ways to be an Informed Advocate to Transgender People

The ACLU champions transgender people’s right to be themselves. We’re fighting discrimination in employment, housing, and public places, including restrooms. We’re working to make sure trans people get the health care they need and we're challenging obstacles to changing the gender marker on identification documents and obtaining legal name changes. We’re fighting to protect the rights and safety of transgender people in prison, jail, and detention facilities as well as the right of trans and gender nonconforming students to be treated with respect at school. Finally, we’re working to secure the rights of transgender parents. 

Allow transgender service members to serve with dignity and respect. We’ve launched our latest ACLU camouflage socks in support.

TITLE: Knows the Facts: 3 Ways to be an Informed Advocate to Transgender People

About 1.4 million transgender adults live in the U.S. That’s nearly the same as the total population of Phoenix, Arizona.

#1 Know The Terminology
Transgender: Describes a person whose gender identity doesn’t match the sex they were assigned at birth. Transgender (trans) is not a sexual orientation. Trans people may be heterosexual, gay, lesbian, bisexual or queer.
Cisgender: Describes people whose gender identity aligns with their assigned gender at birth.
Non-binary: When someone identifies outside of male or female. Some non-binary people identify as transgender.
Intersex: Describes a person whose sex-related characteristics don’t align as all typically male or all typically female.

#2 Recognize the Humanity
Don’t ask personal information about a trans person’s body or medical care.
Don’t ‘out’ trans people you know without their permission.
Do model the language a person uses for themself.

#3 Know The Issues
Transgender people face discrimination obtaining accurate identification documents such as driver’s licenses and passports.
One in five trans people report being refused medical care that they need.
78% of trans people experience harassment in K-12 settings.
31 states lack explicit legal protections for trans people.

Trans Rights are Human Rights
In 2016 more than 50 bills targeting transgender people were proposed in 16 states. Almost all of them have been defeated.

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 3 Ways to Be An Informed Advocate to Transgender People

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