On Thursday, June 28th, in my new role as Project Coordinator of Survivors’ Truths’ TransYouth Speaks project, I attended the first Silver Lake Transgender Task Group meeting at the Sprouted Garden Cafe. LGBTQQ and allied community members attended to discuss how to make Silver Lake safer and more welcoming for transgender folks.
For me, it was refreshing to hear our cisgender (non-transgender) neighbors voice their genuine concerns over the many issues which plague me daily. On a day-to-day basis, as a transgender woman in the community I continually worry about the little things that much of the general public take for granted, like access to restrooms.
One of the more pressing issues the transgender community often struggles with is “Safe access to Public Restrooms.”
Throughout our process of transition, and for some – the rest of their lives, accessing gender-appropriate public restroom facilities can be a stressful, trying, and potentially embarrassing or even dangerous experience.
Sadly, not every city subscribes to California’s general anti-discrimination statute which ensures us access to places of public accommodation free from discrimination.
Silver Lake wants to take the lead and expand on this idea by making it not only apply to public use but also full city-wide implantation of the rule, as well as creating additional gender-neutral facilities free of discrimination and fear.
We also discussed:
AB1121: Focuses on easing the process of modifying gender identification on birth certificates.
AB1266 : This bill would allow our youth to participate in the many sex-segregated programs, facilities, activities and completions. Regardless of their chosen gender identity.
To hear those not directly affected by transgender related issues share their genuine concerns and offer ideas for making the lives of transgender people a little easier created an encouraging environment. Moreover, witnessing the willingness of Silver Lake to act as a forerunner in pushing city-wide change touched my heart.
As time passes, I as a transgender woman am looking forward to bringing you many more great bits of information and outstanding updates going on all around us.
TYS Project Coordinator
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