November is Transgender Awareness Month, a time to honor our vibrant transgender and gender non-conforming community, celebrate the progress made for transgender rights, and recommit to ending the unacceptable – and, unfortunately, widespread – discrimination still faced by transgender people.
At Fenway Health, we’re proud to provide comprehensive and affirming care for people of all gender identities and expressions. Our Transgender Health Department sees over 3,200 transgender and gender non-conforming patients each year. We offer primary and behavioral health care, walk-in clinics, hormone therapy resources, support groups, community programming, youth clinics, and much more. For more information or to become a patient, please call 857.313.6589 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In honor of Transgender Awareness Month, we’ve created an infographic to raise awareness of the disparities this community experiences every day, especially around health and wellness. Please note that the stats included here come from several reports and findings may vary year to year due to limited sample sizes. We invite you to download and share the below image and help us spread this message far and wide: the time to end health disparities for transgender and gender non-conforming people is now.
One of the areas where the transgender and gender non-conforming community faces the highest levels of systematic discrimination is health care. As the infographic above shows, roughly one third of transgender people reported that prior mistreatment by the health care industry has caused them to delay or avoid preventative care, a key part of overall wellness that most of us take for granted. Preventative care is crucial for the early detection of chronic illnesses, STIs, cancer, and other health conditions. Without it, transgender people are at higher risk for advanced, life-threatening illnesses.
Health inequity is often tied to income inequity, especially when it comes to marginalized groups. Even states with more progressive social policies are not immune to this. As reported in the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey, nearly 20% of transgender Massachusetts residents did not see a doctor due to financial hardship. This goes hand in hand with unemployment statistics; transgender people, who frequently face workplace harassment and employment discrimination, experience twice the average national unemployment rate.
Transgender and gender non-conforming people also face disproportionately high rates of violence. According to the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP), this population is 2.8 times more likely to experience hate violence online or via phone and 3.3 times for likely to experience intimate partner violence. Murder rates continue to be higher for transgender people than their cisgender counterparts, with transgender women of color being particularly vulnerable.
How can you support the transgender community and make discrimination and health disparities history? GLAAD has compiled a great list of ways to be an ally to the transgender community. Speak up against transphobic speech. Honor pronouns. Help create safe spaces. Support all-gender bathrooms and gender neutral facilities. Respect everyone’s right to privacy. Educate yourself and your peers. Listen to the stories of transgender people. These are just a few ways you can help, this Transgender Awareness Month and every day.
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