July 27, 2017
NASPA Gender & Sexuality KC,
Good morning, my name is Zackary Gentry and I am the Trans Inclusion Core Member. In light of recent events targeting transgender and gender non-conforming people in our country, the Gender and Sexuality KC would like to offer a few words of recognition for our members who are impacted by the current political climate.
Our KC seeks to honor and empower professionals, students, and community members who use their voices and presence to make a difference in our field and in our world. We all know that prejudice, ignorance, and discrimination are heavy weights that follow many of us through our careers, often affecting our mental and physical health, and possibly, our ability to find gainful employment or access to basic resources such as healthcare. The rights of transgender Americans seem to be constantly engaged in a terrifying game of tug of war between political parties, and the end result usually ends up making life more difficult for those who are impacted most.
On July 26, 2017, President Trump announced via Twitter that the military is moving towards an exclusionary policy that prohibits all transgender people from serving in the military. This action is discrimination in the purest form, and the language used fails to acknowledge the courage, dedication, and service of trans veterans and active members. Joining the military is a very personal decision for every American, but no trans person should be denied access to the resources and benefits that they are entitled to as compensation for their service. The Gender and Sexuality KC wants to acknowledge those in student affairs, and in our KC, that are part of the demographic being targeted by this legislation, and to let you know that your voices and your work is incredibly important and will continue to be as we continue to cultivate affirming environments at our institutions.
The links below offer information and resources for trans veterans (and to some degree, those in active service). The Transgender American Veterans Association (TAVA) has released a similar letter condemning the discriminatory words and actions of the current administration and to remind us all to practice self-care. Those interested in reading the letter, and accessing their web page, can follow this link: http://transveteran.org/2017/07/26/potus-tweet-regarding-transgender-service/
Lastly, I am the core member and lead efforts for the trans inclusion group, please know you can contact me at any time if you have ideas, questions, or comments that you want the trans inclusion working group to address. We are currently in the process of gathering information to begin putting together webinars. We are discussing what those webinars will look like and what they will be about at our next meeting. Please email me at [email protected] if you would like to be added to the email list and invited to future meetings. Please note that you may need to check spam if you are using your university address when emailing me, as sometimes gmail addresses get blocked from university inboxes.
Thank you all again for being part of our family, we are in this together.
Trans Inclusion Core Member
NASPA Gender and Sexuality Knowledge Community
Literary Studies Senior, the University of Texas at Dallas
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