We stand with transgender youth
The Institute’s LGBTQ Health Task Force works to assure access to LGBTQ-affirming health care throughout our organization. In light of recent national events, we wanted to reassert our support for policies that promote the safety and dignity of transgender youth:
WE STAND WITH TRANSGENDER YOUTH
Trans and gender fluid or nonconforming youth face extremely high levels of rejection, discrimination, verbal and physical harassment at school. This has a direct connection to disproportionate drop-out rates from school, as well as higher incidences of homelessness, unemployment, physical and mental health complications, and suicide attempts among trans/gender non-conforming (gnc) youth. We are alarmed at recent efforts to erode protections for trans/gnc youth in school settings, including allowing students to determine which restroom facilities they can use and which activities they participate in based on how they self-identify.
Many schools and institutions have taken the liberty to do the right thing and create gender neutral and private bathrooms – because everyone wants privacy and safety in the bathroom, regardless of gender identity. The withdrawal of this protection for transgender youth in particular runs the risk of sending a message that, “Adults are choosing not to protect you and do not care about your physical needs.”
We stand with transgender youth, and we support efforts to protect and nurture a youth population that is especially vulnerable. We stand with transgender youth, and we affirm their right to physical and emotional safety and dignity at school and in all aspects of their lives.
(Adapted from a statement drafted by the Pediatric and Adolescent Transgender Health Interest Group.)