Integrating the Transgender into Homeless Services


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  • Everyone in the right workshop? Now, an interactive activity! ----- Meeting Notes (10/15/12 13:10) ----- If you're on Twitter, use the #AZCEH12 hashtag to talk about this presentation
  • ----- Meeting Notes (10/15/12 13:10) ----- Brief intros
  • ----- Meeting Notes (10/15/12 13:10) ----- Don't need to go through every term, as they have the handout and can review them. Focus on trans-specific terms.
  • In Arizona: 95,000 – 144,000 (based on census data estimates) This is HOW recently posted Phoenix-specific population breakdown (uncertain of method for collecting this data, though)
  • Tracking LGBTQ – snapshot of the population – better able to address specific needs of the population locally Legal documentation discussion – importance/consequences
  • Now what can we do to change things?
  • What are possible remedies? How would your organization address these issues?
  • Now how do we do these things?
  • Emphasize collaborative nature
  • Integrating the Transgender into Homeless Services

    1. 1. Welcome to Day 2 of the 19th Annual StatewideConference on Homelessness This workshop is: Integrating theTransgender Community into Homeless Services Chris Fike & Megan Salisbury Arizona State University
    2. 2. Do you know what LGBTQ stands for?Yes Don’t Know No
    3. 3. Does your agency have unisex bathrooms for clients?Yes Don’t Know No
    4. 4. Do you know your agency’s anti-discrimination policy for clients?Yes Don’t Know No
    5. 5. Do you know the difference between sex and gender?Yes Don’t Know No
    6. 6. Do you know what the term “cisgender” means?Yes Don’t Know No
    7. 7. Workshop AgendaInformation Presentation Discussion/Dialogue• Vocabulary & Terminology • Moving Forward• National Transgender • Concerns & Specific Scenarios Discrimination Survey • Method for Creating Change• Rationale • Additional Questions• Client Perceptions • Wrap-Up• Services Needed• Community Resources
    8. 8. Universal Vocabulary• LGBTQ: collectively refers to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer community; some alternatives include intersex individuals (I) and allies (A)• Queer: an umbrella term for sexual and gender minorities that do not identify as heterosexual• Sex: the biological distinction between male and female• Gender: the characteristics and expectations associated with biological sex• Gender expression: the way people express their gender• Intersex: applied to individuals whose biological sex cannot be classified as clearly male or female• SOFFA: Significant Others, Friends, Families, and Allies
    9. 9. Transgender-Specific Vocabulary• Transsexualism/Transgender: a condition in which a person experiences a discontinuity between their assigned sex and what they feel their core gender is• Gender nonconformity: extent to which a person’s gender identity, role, or expression, differs from cultural norms• Gender dysphoria: the discomfort or distress that is caused by a discrepancy between a person’s gender and sex• Transphobia: the illogical fear, hatred or anger toward persons who are transgender or who appear to be transgender• Cisgender: refers to someone’s gender identity/expression matching their biological sex• Cisprivilege: refers to the privileged position in society of those individuals who are identified as cisgender
    10. 10. National Transgender Discrimination Survey: An Overview Conducted by the National Center for Transgender Equality & the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force in 2011, with 6,450 participants from all 50 states, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and GuamShelter Statistics: Bias due to being trans•20% reported homelessness•23% reported attempting to access shelter services • 29% denied shelter access • 55% accessing shelter reported harassment • 25% accessing shelter reported physical assault • 22% accessing shelter reported sexual assault•Trans women more likely to be denied shelter (34%) thantrans men (20%)
    11. 11. National Transgender Discrimination Survey: An Overview Conducted by the National Center for Transgender Equality & the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force in 2011, with 6,450 participants from all 50 states, District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and GuamTrans Community Demographics• Respondents live in extreme poverty•4x as likely to have annual household income of less than $10,000•41% reported attempting suicide (v. 1.6% general population)• 2x as likely to experience unemployment• 4x as likely to experience unemployment for trans people of color• 19% refused medical care due to their trans status• 57% experienced significant family rejection• 63% experienced a serious act of discrimination due to bias Job loss, eviction, loss of relationship, incarceration, & more.
    12. 12. What Does it Mean to Transition?•Transitioning genders is a psychological, social, legal,and medical process. • Psychological: personal acceptance, coming out, therapy • Social: asking to be called a different name, using different pronouns, wearing different clothing • Legal: changing driver’s license, name, updating records to reflect these changes (school, credit card, employment history, etc…) • Medical: hormonal treatment, surgery, voice therapy
    13. 13. Additional Transitioning Barriers• Not all who identify as trans choose sex reassignment surgery • Some do not wish to physically transition with hormones and/or surgery • Many lack the resources to do so • Surgeries alone can run between $5,000-$20,000+ • Few resources available to assist those who want to physically transition • Phoenix has one adult & two endocrinologists willing to give hormones• Significance of transition process to providers• Do not assume all trans individuals have the same needs• Significant AHCCCS restrictions for trans individuals
    14. 14. Why This Is Important Now• Population is increasing (nationally & locally) • Population of trans people in the United States increased from 1% (2000) to 3% (2010), with an estimated 4.5% in Arizona (2009)• Many trans individuals do not seek shelter or disclose their trans identity due to fear of discrimination• Trans individuals seeking services may not know where to go or where is safe, often leading to increased risk • Underground economy activities, including prostitution, drug abuse, hustling • Agencies need trans inclusiveness for client safety • Policies, protocol, practices, education, awareness & outreach
    15. 15. Client Needs• Knowledgeable providers as allies and advocates • “Its incredibly difficult to find a social worker that is familiar with trans problems and trying to get you through the system.” • Awareness of how to navigate social service system • Challenging stereotypes and prejudice within the system• Safe support • Agency staff meeting clients where they are • Providers aware of transitioning process • Help with obtaining legal documents• More knowledge of available resources • Outreach to educate about what safe resources are available • Community awareness
    16. 16. Social Service Provider Needs• Leadership • Need for demonstrated engagement on trans-related issues • Gap in leadership on this issue• Education & training • Need to increase awareness on trans-related issues among providers and administrators • Need to increase training opportunities available• Knowledge of available resources • Need to increase awareness of local and federal resources to support trans-identified individuals and agencies supporting trans-identified individuals
    17. 17. Standards of Care Developed by the World Professional Association of Transgender Health• Focus on transitioning, not psychiatric diagnosis• Provides clinical guidance so trans individuals can achieve lasting personal comfort to maximize their overall health• May also be used by individuals, their families, and social institutions to understand how they can assist with promoting optimal health for members of this diverse population Available online at
    18. 18. Moving Forward• Trans-inclusive polices and protocols • Eliminating barriers to services & increasing accessibility• Trans-inclusive practices • Eliminating discrimination and harassment within agency settings• Ongoing educational and training opportunities for provider staff and agency program participants • Increasing understanding and acceptance• Outreach into the trans community • Increasing awareness of available resources• Additional resources for trans-identified individuals • Increasing opportunities for entering supportive services
    19. 19. Scenarios• Potential program participant identifies as trans• A staff member or another program participant “discovers” gender identity status• Other program participants (and/or their children) express concerns or have questions about trans clients • Including issues related to shared bathroom space, for example
    20. 20. Method for Creating Change• Strategy Chart Development • Problem Identification • Goals • Organizational Considerations • Constituents, Allies, Opponents • Targets • Tactics
    21. 21. “Mock Homeless Service Provider” Strategy Chart Activity• Interactively, we will create a Strategy Chart to map out a plan for transitioning the “Mock Homeless Service Provider” to becoming more inclusive of transgender individuals
    22. 22. Arizona Resources• Central Arizona Gender Alliance Offers support, education, relevant news and a community calendar•One Voice Community Center (602)712-0111 | Provide educational, social and wellness programs in Phoenix area•This is HOW (623) 414-5245 | Outreach to trans, recovery house, has extensive trans resource guide•Stonewall Institute (602) 535-6468 | Outpatient drug and alcohol treatment center providing a full array of services•Wingspan (520) 624-1779 | Promotes the freedom, equality, safety, and well being of all LGBT people
    23. 23. National Resources• Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network | (212) 727-0135 Strives to assure all LGBT individuals in schools are safe• Human Rights Campaign | (202) 628-4160 Works to achieve civil rights for the LGBT community• National Center for Transgender Equality | (202) 903-0112 Devoted to ending discrimination and violence against trans• National Gay & Lesbian Task Force | (202) 393-5177 Helps affirm a sense of community for the LGBT population• Parents, Families, and Friends of Lesbians & Gays (PFLAG) | (202) 467-8180 Parents that aim to celebrate diversity in their LGBT families
    24. 24. Wrap-Up• What you should have learned: • Trans-related vocabulary and terminology • Consequences of transphobia • Reasons why trans individuals need to be able to access safe homeless services • Recommendations for transitioning your agency • Method of planning for change/transition Additional Questions/Concerns?
    25. 25. Contact Information Chris Fike @chrisfike on Twitter Megan Salisbury @citychild on Twitter