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Home | Tag Archives: transgender

Tag Archives: transgender

Op-Ed: A Look Back at PFLAG’s Youth Trans Visibility Event

Sundays are generally family days for me. And as I prepared myself for PFLAG’s Youth Trans Visibility Event, I had the thought I wanted to stay home to be with my family.

As soon as this thought entered my mind, I quickly reminded myself what this event was about: that I get the opportunity to celebrate not only our local transgender community but also the transgender community worldwide…transgender persons who do not have family support because of who they are as people.

I can represent the love and acceptance they may not receive at home. Or maybe they do have family support but not the support of their community. On this day I had the privilege to celebrate and honor their lives and stories.

The PFLAG board members and volunteers all worked hard to provide an event that could be tailored to transgender youth, so that it could truly be a day of celebration. We decorated the room in the transgender flag colors of pink, blue and white. We set up game tables, a cookie decorating table, tables with pink and blue table cloths for participants to sit and a food booth serving nachos.

We even had a scavenger hunt where groups of youth received a great big loot of toys for their “hunting efforts”.

Amidst the games, cookies, cupcakes and nachos were transgender youth of varying ages celebrating who they are with their friends and family there in support. People were seen hugging and catching up. Moms who shared a common connection of having a trans child were seen talking with pride about their child. There was a lot of fun, laughter and most importantly love in the room.

In the middle of all the fun, we had two women, Jocelyn and Andi who spoke to us about their journey of transition. They both spoke with passion and courage about how to love and accept ourselves.

Jocelyn and Andi shared that while they did not have a traumatic coming out or transition experience, they know many transgender people do. They shared the all too unfortunate events that many transgender people experience and that we as a community and society must do more.

After more games and socializing, we were treated with an exceptionally, beautiful musical number by Jocelyn. THIS GIRL CAN SING! If you have not had the privilege of hearing her, you are missing out!

I was lucky enough to hear her sing the night before at the Queer Arts showcase hosted by Borderland Rainbow Center. She commands a stage and she left many in the room that day in tears. She sang “Hero” by Mariah Carey. These words could not be more fitting for the transgender community and the strength and resilience they must have in a society that still struggles to understand them.

The lyrics encourage us to look inside us and we will find that a hero lies in us all. This is also a message for the TransAllies in the world. That it takes strength and courage to stand with our transgender friends and fight for their equal treatment. Jocelyn sang lyrics that will stay with all of us in that room for years to come.

This was truly an event that celebrated the dynamic transgender community that exists in El Paso. It was interesting to think that we were joined in celebration with other transgender communities around the country and world to say we see you.

We love you. And that you matter in this world. Transgender people are just like any human deserving of love, respect and equality.

Although this was a day of celebration, those transgender persons who have lost their lives due to violent acts, were not lost on us.

After experiencing such a fun day, it was hard to come across a news article the very next day of a black transwoman who was fatally wounded by a gun violence. The article cited the Human Rights Publication of 2018 reporting transwomen faced record levels of violence in 2017 and 2018. That the transgender people targeted the most are those who identify as female, are women of color and under the age of 35.

No human should ever be targeted for their identity. Ever. Not for religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, race, culture, immigration status or disabilities. No transgender person should be made to feel less than anything than their wonderful, beautiful self.

We as a society must recognize the unique talents, diversity and strength they offer this world. And if we can continue to have events that support and celebrate our transgender friends, we can continue to make them visible to the world and be seen for who they are.

I hope that through continued awareness and events like the one PFLAG hosted, we will be able bring greater acceptance and love to the transgender community.

***

Author:  Sara Harrison – Borderland Rainbow Center

***

The El Paso Herald-Post welcomes all guest columns, open letters, letters to the Editor and analysis pieces for publication, to submit a piece or for questions regarding guidelines, please email us at news@epheraldpost.com

Planned Parenthood Expands Healthcare Services for Transgender Patients in El Paso

Via a news release, officials with Planned Parenthood of Greater Texas announced Tuesday the expansion of healthcare services for Transgender residents of the Paso del Norte Region.

“Planned Parenthood is committed to improving the way transgender Texans receive health care in our community, including eliminating barriers to that care,” officials stated.

To achieve that goal, Planned Parenthood has expanded healthcare services for transgender residents of the Paso del Norte Region to offer gender-affirming hormone therapy (GAHT) at its El Paso location.

“Our health centers have always provided not just trans-friendly, but trans-competent healthcare to patients who too often have previously gone without necessary care out of fear or uncertainty,” said Elizabeth Cardwell, PPGT Lead Clinician, “to expand that care to assist our patients in fully-becoming the gender they identify with is a point of pride for our organization and health center staff.”

El Paso now joins Planned Parenthood health centers in Arlington, Austin, Denton and Plano in providing GAHT to its patients.

Officials added, “LGBTQ communities are underserved when it comes to accessing healthcare, and many LGBTQ people face discrimination and ignorance in healthcare settings — especially transgender patients.”

Feedback from transgender patients has been overwhelmingly positive.

One patient receiving gender affirming hormone therapy at the Arlington Health Center shared, “This was a wonderful, positive, affirming experience for me. Staff was so respectful and used the correct name/pronoun. Thank you so much for being amazing!”

To make an appointment or encourage a loved one to schedule one today, click here.

Transgender Rights Advocates to Join in “Resist and Support” Rally Saturday

Local advocates will join in a “Resist and Support” rally Saturday at San Jacinto Plaza in support of the transgender military community.

The event will take place from 2 to 4 p.m., and  is in response to Donald Trump’s recent comments on a military ban on transgender individuals.

At 2 p.m. advocates will meet at the Federal Courthouse and march to San Jacinto Plaza for a short speaking program and rally, which will include members of the transgender community, local activists and faith leaders.

What: “Resist and Support” March and Rally

When: 2 to 4 p.m.Saturday, July 29, 2017

Where: San Jacinto Plaza (114 W Mills Ave, El Paso, TX 79901)

              ***March will begin at the Federal Court Building***

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