Transgender Forum in Bronx a First

Council member Ritchie Torres at the transgender forum at Hostos Community College (Photo via The Bronx Free Press)

Council member Ritchie Torres at the transgender forum at Hostos Community College (Photo via The Bronx Free Press)

The city’s first citywide transgender forum was held July 23 at Hostos Community College in the Bronx, reports Gregg McQueen in The Bronx Free Press. Organized by City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Council member Ritchie Torres and the LGBT caucus of the City Council, the forum drew more than 100 to hear about issues of concern to the transgender community in the city, including discrimination in housing, employment, health care and education. Policing of the transgender community was also on the agenda.

“The rampant discrimination and violence faced by transgender New Yorkers requires immediate and coordinated action by all stakeholders, from community organizations to elected officials,” stated Councilmember Torres, who represents District 15 in the Central Bronx.

Mark-Viverito observed that the city is dedicated to removing barriers to services that transgender individuals require. She noted that the City Council passed legislation that would allow transgender individuals to self-identify their gender on their municipal IDs. She told the audience:

“It is our duty as elected officials to engage the transgender community and that the solutions to these issues come from the people who directly experience them. I stand with our transgender brothers and sisters until we achieve full trans equality and justice.”

Read more about the meeting in The Bronx Free Press.

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