hard truths

Being Transgender Pretty Much Means You’re Going To Struggle Through Life

Quizzing some 6,450 transgender Americans, a study from the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force finds Ts are “four to five times more likely than the general population to live in extreme poverty, with an annual household income of less than $10,000 at all levels of educational attainment. Those surveyed were twice as likely to be unemployed; 26 percent had lost a job because they were transgender, though if you factor in not being hired in the first place or denied a promotion, that number rises to 47 percent. A full 90 percent of respondents reported harassment or other mistreatment in the workplace. … Those who have been fired due to anti-transgender bias are far more likely to enter the underground economy, where sex work and drug sales expose participants to a range of increased risks, including incarceration and a higher incidence of intravenous drug use and HIV (with rates in the survey at four times the national average). No wonder respondents, when asked to list their policy priorities, threw the biggest numbers (70 percent) behind protection for transgender/gender nonconforming people from discrimination in hiring and at work. Transgender people often suffer harm from the very systems designed to protect most citizens. Twenty-two percent report being harassed by police, but the problem extends beyond law enforcement.” And while this is the largest study of its kind, providing some of the most concrete details on what trans Americans face in their lives, none of this is “surprising” in the true sense of the word. Not when we have elected public officials throwing an entire group of people under the bus.

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