Disparities for New York State’s Transgender Residents

Strength in Numbers’ Somjen Frazer discusses the key findings of her consulting group’s study. (Photo by Donna Aceto via Gay City News)

Strength in Numbers’ Somjen Frazer discusses the key findings of her consulting group’s study. (Photo by Donna Aceto via Gay City News)

Transgender individuals suffer bias in many forms, including violence, as the recent beating of a transgender woman in Jackson Heights attests. But a new survey of the transgender population in New York state demonstrates that bias and discrimination can also manifest themselves in other ways, less dramatic but still damaging, that affect daily health and well-being.

Paul Schindler of Gay City News writes that the survey highlights a raft of disparities suffered by transgender individuals. A survey-based assessment of educational attainment, employment, income, housing, and health shows that transgender residents of New York suffer “startling disparities in their well-being, even when compared to other segments of the LGBT community.”

Among the findings was evidence that the transgender portion of the queer community is 50 percent more likely to be in poor or only fair health, 150 percent more likely to have a history of homelessness, twice as likely to live in poverty, and three times more likely to have less than a high school education — all by comparison to lesbian, gay, and bisexual respondents.

“This data is not something we didn’t know, this is our community,” said Carrie Davis, a transgender woman who is the chief programs and policy officer at the LGBT Community Center, where the report was announced on November 20. “But what always strikes me when I look at data like this is how extreme the disparities are.”

The study was produced by the Strength in Numbers Consulting Group on behalf of the Empire State Pride Agenda (ESPA). To find out how the study was conducted, and learn more of its findings, go to Gay City News.

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