Today I learned the Trump Administration officially rescinded health care protections for transgender people on June 12, 2020.
Since 1999, June has been a time to promote the dignity, equality, and increased visibility of the LGBTQ community. June was selected as Pride Month to commemorate the 1969 Stonewall Riots, which resulted from a police raid on the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village in Manhattan. The protests and riots that followed over the next few nights are seen as watershed moments that helped organize LGBTQ pride marches across the United States.
One of the Mother's of Pride Month was the #Black #Trans #Activist Marsha P. Johnson, who was not only one of the veterans of the Stonewall Riots, she was also a lifelong organizer and advocate for the Trans and Gay community until her untimely death.
In addition to this being #Pride Month, today is also a somber Memorial Day.
On this day, 4 years ago, LGBTQ patrons of the Pulse Night Club in Orlando, FL were massacred.
This is on record as the deadliest incident of violence against the LGBTQ community where 50 souls were stolen. It's the 3rd deadliest terror attack on US soil since the September 11th attacks in 2001.
(The 2nd largest occurred one year after Pulse in 2017 at a music festival Las Vegas.)
Mentioning that June is both LGBTQ Pride Month and that June 12th is the 4th Anniversary of the largest LGBTQ terror attack is important context for President Trump's decision today to erase health care protection for Transgender Americans, who often experience erasure in our society in other ways.
ANOTHER REASON IT MATTERS: the Health Care Industry Has Failed The Trans Community
In a 2015 report, FenwayHealth.org shared that 29% of transgender people reported having to teach their healthcare provider about transgender health issues. And, because of a fear of discrimination, 1 out of 5 postponed or did not seek healthcare in the previous year.
In the United States, healthcare is tied to employment. Because of bias and other challenges related to inclusion, transgender and gender-fluid people aren't employed at the same rates as cisgender people. This limits their access to healthcare.
NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health reported in 2017 that 31% of transgender Americans lacked regular access to healthcare.
In short, transgender people have limited access to care and have a bad relationship with the healthcare system because these systems have harmful medical biases that stem from #cisgenderism that discredits and denigrates any gender that isn't male or female.
Coming to understand the medical biases and discrimination that transgender people experience, the Obama Administration provided the Trans Community some legal civil rights protections related to their healthcare.
But today, on the anniversary of the Pulse Massacre, during Pride Month, President Trump has rescinded these civil rights protections.
One has to wonder, then, if the convergence of Pride, Pulse, and this Policy Change was a coincidence. Or as some have said, "perhaps the cruelty is the point."
I have been working with clients deeply for over the last 2 weeks to help them understand that their desire to discuss #bias or #antiracism will require them to be bold and recognize those two topics live in the context of White Supremacy Culture.
It's important that during Pride Month, and in a time when there is a surge of interest in #antiracism, that we understand that the struggle for LGBTQ rights is interconnected with the movement for race equity because the force against race equity is the same force behind Transphobia, Cisgenderism and Heteronormativity. And that force is White Supremacy Culture.