Parents Advocate for Their Transgender Youth 

AUSTIN – Just days after gold medal decathlon winner Bruce Jennerconfirmed “I am a woman” in a landmark interview with Diane Sawyer, about two dozen transgender Texans hoped greater awareness of their struggle for equal rights will mean more open ears in the state Capitol.

“We’re very hopeful for the Bruce Jenner interview that happened the other day and how that’s going to play out in allowing people to better hear, better be of the mindset to listen to the stories of their neighbors and friends,” said Katrina Stewart, executive director of the Transgender Education Network of Texas.

“What we want to do is share our stories. We’re not here to make people scared. But that fear shows that they are people listening.”

Texas lawmakers this session have filed more than 20 bills that would restrict rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people living in the Lone Star State. Of particular concern to the transgender community are a number of House bills that would make it a crime for a transgender person to use a restroom that is contrary to the gender listed on his or her driver’s license.

The term “transgender” refers to someone whose gender identity or expression does not match the sex he or she was assigned at birth. A transgender person born male may live as a woman with or without taking female hormones or undergoing gender assignment surgery. Transgender Americans continue to be denied many of the rights that are increasingly extended to lesbian and gay Americans, including the right to serve in the military.

 

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