masstpc:

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Demand equal access to public accomodations for transgender people in MA! 

The cosponsorship deadline for the Equal Access Bill is February 1. So now‭ ‬is the time‭ ‬to make your voice heard‭!‬ Contact your state senators and representatives‭ ‬TODAY‭ ‬and ask them to support the bill.

In November‭ ‬2011,‭ ‬Massachusetts became the‭ ‬16th state to add non-discrimination laws for gender identity in the areas of employment,‭ ‬housing,‭ ‬K-12‭ ‬public education,‭ ‬and credit.‭ ‬Additionally,‭ ‬Massachusetts Hate Crimes laws were also updated to include gender identity.‭ ‬This law is known as the Act Relative to Gender Identity.

This new‭ ‬law did not‭ ‬include protections in public accommodations,‭ ‬though.‭ ‬Public accommodations‭ ‬include‭ ‬banks,‭ ‬gas stations,‭ ‬beauty salons,‭ ‬doctors‭’ ‬offices,‭ ‬court rooms,‭ ‬hotels,‭ ‬restaurants,‭ ‬shopping centers,‭ ‬theaters,‭ ‬sports arenas,‭ ‬museums,‭ ‬libraries,‭ ‬zoos,‭ ‬beaches,‭ ‬public transit,‭ ‬airports,‭ ‬public streets,‭ ‬sidewalks,‭ ‬and many other places open to the public.

Here’s what‭ ‬YOU can do to ensure all transgender people in Massachusetts have‭ ‬equal rights to‭ ‬use‭ ‬public spaces‭ ‬free of any discrimination.‭ 

     1) Locate your‭ ‬state officials

‭     2) ‬Ask for your‭ ‬State‭ ‬Representative or Senator by name.‭ ‬Usually you end up speaking with a legislative aide.‭ ‬Introduce yourself as a constituent.‭ ‬Give your name and town.‭ ‬Tell them that passing the‭ ‬Equal Access‭ ‬Bill is VERY important to you.‭ ‬If they need more information,‭ ‬tell them the bill has been filed as‭ ‬House Docket‭ ‬#1172‭ ‬and‭ ‬Senate Docket‭ ‬#568.‭ 

The Equal Access Bill would add‭ “‬gender identity‭” ‬to existing Massachusetts civil rights law for public accommodations,‭ ‬which currently prohibits discrimination on the basis of age,‭ ‬race,‭ ‬creed,‭ ‬color,‭ ‬national origin,‭ ‬sexual orientation,‭ ‬sex and marital status.‭ ‬Nationwide,‭ ‬15‭ ‬states,‭ ‬the District of Columbia and‭ ‬187‭ ‬cities and counties‭ (‬including Boston,‭ ‬Cambridge,‭ ‬Amherst and Northampton‭) ‬have passed non-discrimination laws or ordinances protecting people on this basis.

If you would like to follow a detailed script when calling,‭ ‬you can‭ ‬find that here.

     3‭) ‬Fill out our Report Results form to let us know how it went.

Another way that you can help is to talk up‭ ‬#MAtransbill online.‭ 

We’d love for you to post to Facebook,‭ ‬Twitter,‭ ‬Tumblr,‭ ‬etc.,‭ ‬about why you are supporting the Equal Access Bill today.‭ ‬Why are public accommodations protections important to you‭? ‬Use the hashtag‭ ‬#MAtransbill,‭ ‬and add‭ ‬#TransMA and‭ ‬#MApoli if there’s room.‭ Here’s a sample tweet:

Stop discrimination in MA public accommodations based on gender-identity/expression. Call sens/reps 1/31! http://www.masstpc.org/take-action/contact-elected #MAtransbill

If you’d like more information,‭ ‬please check out these resources:

‭* ‬2013‭ ‬Equal Access in Public Accommodations Legislative Brief‭ ‬(PDF‭)

What Are Public Accommodations‭?‬ (PDF‭)

Consequences of Not Having Equal Access Protections in Public Accommodations‭ ‬(PDF‭)

Twitter’s down right now, but let’s see what we can do to continue getting the word out! New Englanders, this means you! 

masstpc:

Are you wondering why Massachusetts needs to pass an Act Relative to Equal Access in Hospitals, Public Transportation, Nursing Homes, Supermarkets, Retail Establishments, and all other places open to the public? Below are just a few of the consequences of transgender people not having equal access to public spaces.

Imagine trying to get a drink with friends and being refused service based on your gender identity or expression. This is a harsh reality transgender residents of Massachusetts face daily. In 2010 in Peabody, a group of trans women were attempting to meet for a social function at a local restaurant. They were refused services because their licenses did not “match their appearances.” When the women challenged this, the establishment’s management told them their entrance denail was “due to the length of their skirts.” After filing an unsuccessful mediation with the Peabody Licensing Board, the women took their case to the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination and ultimately won their case.

Being refused service at a restaurant is frustrating, embarassing, and hurtful. Being outed in front of others could even lead to physical danger. And it gets worse. Public accommodations also include places like doctor’s offices, emergency rooms, urgent care facilities, nursing homes, and more. Whether it be a routine primary care appointment or admission to an emergency room, transgender individuals can still be turned away under current Mass. law, all because the doctor or attending nurse on duty “Doesn’t treat people like you” or thinks your case is “A separate thing” to be addressed by mental health professionals instead of a clinician.

This was the case for MTPC steering committee member Mycroft Masada Holmes. During a medical appointment in Boston, Mycroft came out as transgender while discussing medical needs and history. The doctor became visibly uncomfortable. “She really was not pleased and just more and more seemed to want to end the interview,” said Mycroft. Without the Equal Access Bill, transgender individuals in Massachusetts will continue to face situations like this.

But don’t take it secondhand from us, hear it straight from Dagen, a Massachusetts resident who is currently affected by the lack of equal access to public accommodations. For Dagen, many of the problems he has faced in finding a primary care physician have been based in ignorance more than cruelty or blatant discrimination. He had to approach more than 30 doctors before finding one he felt could deal with a trans patient. And, even so, he had trouble scheduling a pap smear. Hear it in his own words.

Once public accommodations protections are in place, health care providers should receive instructions about how to implement the law, including best practices recommendations. This information will teach them about what being transgender is and how to provide good and compassionate care.

Check out our Call to Action for easy instructions on how to find your state legislators and what to say to them. February 1 is the deadline for Mass. senators and representatives to sign on as cosponsors of the Equal Access Bill. Please call your legislators NOW and ask them to commit to cosponsorship.

Another way that you can help is to talk up #MAtransbill online. Here’s a sample tweet:

Stop discrimination in MA public accommodations based on gender-identity/expression. Call sens/reps 1/31! http://www.masstpc.org/take-action/contact-elected #MAtransbill

If you’d like more information, please check out these resources:

Thank you for your support!

masstpc:

Demand equal access to public accomodations for transgender people in MA! 

Now‭ ‬is the time‭ ‬to make your voice heard‭!‬ Contact your state senators and representatives‭ ‬BY JANUARY‭ ‬31‭ ‬and ask them to cosponsor the‭ ‬Equal Access Bill.

In November‭ ‬2011,‭ ‬Massachusetts became the‭ ‬16th state to add non-discrimination laws for gender identity in the areas of employment,‭ ‬housing,‭ ‬K-12‭ ‬public education,‭ ‬and credit.‭ ‬Additionally,‭ ‬Massachusetts Hate Crimes laws were also updated to include gender identity.‭ ‬This law is known as the Act Relative to Gender Identity.

This new‭ ‬law did not‭ ‬include protections in public accommodations,‭ ‬though.‭ ‬Public accommodations‭ ‬include‭ ‬banks,‭ ‬gas stations,‭ ‬beauty salons,‭ ‬doctors‭’ ‬offices,‭ ‬court rooms,‭ ‬hotels,‭ ‬restaurants,‭ ‬shopping centers,‭ ‬theaters,‭ ‬sports arenas,‭ ‬museums,‭ ‬libraries,‭ ‬zoos,‭ ‬beaches,‭ ‬public transit,‭ ‬airports,‭ ‬public streets,‭ ‬sidewalks,‭ ‬and many other places open to the public.

Here’s what‭ ‬YOU can do to ensure all transgender people in Massachusetts have‭ ‬equal rights to‭ ‬use‭ ‬public spaces‭ ‬free of any discrimination.‭ 

     1.) Locate your‭ ‬state officials

‭     2.) ‬Ask for your‭ ‬State‭ ‬Representative or Senator by name.‭ ‬Usually you end up speaking with a legislative aide.‭ ‬Introduce yourself as a constituent.‭ ‬Give your name and town.‭ ‬Tell them that passing the‭ ‬Equal Access‭ ‬Bill is VERY important to you.‭ ‬If they need more information,‭ ‬tell them the bill has been filed as‭ ‬House Docket‭ ‬#1172‭ ‬and‭ ‬Senate Docket‭ ‬#568.‭ 

The Equal Access Bill would add‭ “‬gender identity‭” ‬to existing Massachusetts civil rights law for public accommodations,‭ ‬which currently prohibits discrimination on the basis of age,‭ ‬race,‭ ‬creed,‭ ‬color,‭ ‬national origin,‭ ‬sexual orientation,‭ ‬sex and marital status.‭ ‬Nationwide,‭ ‬15‭ ‬states,‭ ‬the District of Columbia and‭ ‬187‭ ‬cities and counties‭ (‬including Boston,‭ ‬Cambridge,‭ ‬Amherst and Northampton‭) ‬have passed non-discrimination laws or ordinances protecting people on this basis.

If you would like to follow a detailed script when calling,‭ ‬you can‭ ‬find that here.

     3‭) ‬Fill out our Report Results form to let us know how it went.

Another way that you can help is to talk up‭ ‬#MAtransbill online.‭ 

We’d love for you to post to Facebook,‭ ‬Twitter,‭ ‬Tumblr,‭ ‬etc.,‭ ‬about why you are supporting the Equal Access Bill today.‭ ‬Why are public accommodations protections important to you‭? ‬Use the hashtag‭ ‬#MAtransbill,‭ ‬and add‭ ‬#TransMA and‭ ‬#MApoli if there’s room.‭ 

If you’d like more information,‭ ‬please check out these resources:

‭* ‬2013‭ ‬Equal Access in Public Accommodations Legislative Brief‭ ‬(PDF‭)

* What Are Public Accommodations‭?‬ (PDF‭)

* Consequences of Not Having Equal Access Protections in Public Accommodations‭ ‬(PDF‭)

Signal boost for all you MA residents! 

masstpc:

To learn about experiences of trans youth, adult, and families, explore the I AM: Trans People Speak videos. MTPC started the I Am Project in 2012 to raise awareness of the diversity among transgender individuals within our communities. The project provides a platform for trans people to speak for ourselves. These positive stories can help combat the negative stereotyping of the trans community in fiction and the news. 

MISSION:

I AM: Trans People Speak is a project to raise awareness about the diversity that exists within transgender communities. It gives a voice to transgender individuals, as well as their families, friends, and allies.

“The stories of everyday transgender Americans remain relatively unheard in both national and LGBT media,” said GLAAD President Herndon Graddick. “These stories will not only empower members of the transgender community who rarely see relatable stories, but also educate Americans everywhere about the fact that the community is a valuable part of the fabric of our culture. The campaign will also shine a light on the high level of discrimination that our transgender friends, family and neighbors continue to face in schools, the workplace and in their own communities.”

Together we can make our own media and continue to make a positive change in the representation of transgender people. We do this by focusing on the full individual. Transgender people come from a range of experiences and backgrounds, including age, race, ethnicity, gender expression, and sexual orientation.

This is the space to empower yourself and your community by sharing your own experiences. By coming together as a community and telling our own unique tales about our path through life, we can share common ground, mutual journeys, and even bring our own unique experiences to the forefront to share with others. Creating a positive media representation of transgender individuals begins and ends with us, and it is a powerful feeling to share one’s story with others. We invite you to submit your story and tell us your chapter of transgender history. 

GOALS:

This project allows transgender people, family members, friends, and allies to:

  • Empower themselves through sharing their own stories and speaking for themselves
  • Be visible by participating in a nation-wide project
  • Show the diversity of backgrounds and experiences that exist within trans communities
  • Provide a forum to learn about, connect with, and find support through the stories of other community members
  • Educate the public about the reality of transgender peoples lives and the unique challenges they face due to pervasive bias, stereotypes, and misunderstanding.

If you would like to share your story, please visit: http://www.transpeoplespeak.org/submit-your-story

Rather than focusing on medical transition and private medical information, we invite you to share your stories about your identity and experience. We invite you to tell us:

  • How‭ ‬it has been for you accessing housing‭? ‬Accessing education‭? 
  • How has it been interacting with your family and friends‭?‬ 
  • How does your race/ethnicity intersect with your trans identity‭? 
  • What activities and hobbies are you interested in‭? 
  • What‭ ‬other‭ ‬communities are you part of‭? 
  • What has been the most difficult part of your trans experience‭? ‬What has been the best part‭? 
  • What do you want the world to know about your story‭? 

Whether you’re an every day Clark Kent or you’re actually Superman, we still want to hear from you. 

In a world that is often full of discrimination and saddening statistics, offering a hopeful and common voice for those who may be beginning their trans* journey is key. Offering a common tale that may resonate throughout your community, or even with someone across the world is key to creating positive change and creating a world where we are all equal, regardless of gender identity or expression. 

This project is centered on the full individual because people are more than their gender. This is a space to empower ourselves and our communities by sharing our own lived experience, and we welcome yours. We look forward to hearing from you! 

masstpc:

Founded in 2001, the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC) is an advocacy, education, and community-building organization that works to end discrimination on the basis of gender identity and expression. This includes working toward the empowerment of all persons who have been, are being, or might be deprived of equal rights and/or fair treatment because of their gender expression or identity. MTPC is a fiscally sponsored 501c3 non-profit with one full-time staff, active Board, dedicated volunteers, and statewide chapters. MTPC does not engage in campaign or electoral politics.

We at MTPC believe that denying transgender individuals in our great state of Massachusetts their basic rights is unjust and discriminatory. We believe strongly that Massachusetts is the state paving the way on LGBT issues, and are working toward our goal of bringing transgender issues to the forefront of Massachusetts legislative attention. There is no time like the present, and we at MTPC strive to change the face of transgender rights in Massachusetts. We are off to a great start in the new year with our work on the 2013 transgender Equal Access Bill, and have many more exciting projects ahead!

How is MTPC run?

MTPC is governed by a Steering Committee (SC), made up of persons of all ages who self-identify as transgender/gender variant/genderqueer/intersex (majority) as well as non-transgender family members, partners, friends, and allies (minority). SC members, elected on an annual basis by the voting membership, oversee its executive director and direct policy and priority, as captured in a mission statement and bylaws. The SC also performs much of the work of MTPC in the absence of adequate paid staff.

What does MTPC provide that varies from other LGBT nonprofits in Massachusetts?

MTPC provides a consistent voice to key decision makers about the lives of transgender youth and adults and their families. While there are many legal, advocacy, and social organizations focused broadly on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community there are very few that are led by and created specifically for the transgender community, and in Massachusetts MTPC is that organization.

What are MTPC’s current goals?

The aim of MTPC’s programming is to improve the lives of the Massachusetts transgender youth, adults, and their families by working on the following initiatives on a daily basis:

  • Organizing and empowering transgender people to advocate for themselves
  • Developing leadership within transgender communities through community education and opportunities
  • Educating the public, the media, and institutions about issues facing transgender communities
  • Increasing the awareness of policy makers about the needs of transgender communities
  • Advocating for equal access through policy changes at the institutional, state, and local levels.


These initiatives were created in direct response to the needs voiced to MTPC by transgender people and reiterated in the findings of a 2009 community needs survey conducted by MTPC.

Please submit any questions or comments for us to our Ask box or send us an email. Following us ensures you’re always up to date on the latest news from MTPC!


masstpc:

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The Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition is hosting a Legislative Action Day at the State House January 17 from 11 am to 1 pm. Constituents will gather to educate their legislators about the necessity of protecting transgender people’s access to public accommodations through the passage of An Act Relative to Equal Access in Hospitals, Public Transportation, Nursing Homes, Supermarkets, Retail Establishments, and all other places open to the public.

The Equal Access Bill would add “gender identity” to existing Massachusetts civil rights law for public accommodations, which currently prohibits discrimination on the basis of age, race, creed, color, national origin, sexual orientation, sex and marital status. Nationwide, 15 states, the District of Columbia and 187 cities and counties (including Boston, Cambridge, Amherst and Northampton) have passed non-discrimination laws or ordinances protecting people on this basis.

Public accommodations include any establishment, public or private, that is open to the general public and provides, or endeavors to provide, some type of goods and/or services to the general public. Examples of accommodations are banks, gas stations, beauty salons, funeral parlors and employment agencies; offices of professionals such as doctors, attorneys, dentists, accountants, travel agents and insurance agents; court rooms, lobbies, polling places and government agencies; hotels, restaurants and bars; shopping centers; theaters, concert halls, sports arenas and convention centers; museums, libraries and galleries; parks, zoos, amusement parks and beaches; public transit and airports; and public streets and sidewalks.

MTPC’s Executive Director, Gunner Scott, said, “Public accommodations protections would make explicit the Commonwealth’s commitment to providing people of all gender identities equal protection under the law, and guarantee transgender youth, adults, and families the opportunity to participate in and contribute to their communities and to the local economy. This bill is about fairness and all residents having the same access to public places.”

According to a recent transgender discrimination survey, 58% of Massachusetts respondents experienced verbal harassment or mistreatment in public accommodations such as hotels, restaurants, buses, airports and government agencies because they are transgender; 22% of transgender adults were denied equal treatment by a government agency or official; and 24% of transgender adults who interacted with police experienced harassment by officers.

“I applaud the Massachusetts legislature and Governor Deval Patrick for the 2011 passage of An Act Relative to Gender Identity, which adds gender identity non-discrimination protections in the areas of education, employment, housing and credit/lending. The Equal Access Bill fills in that missing piece of public accommodations, which are all the places between home, work or school. This is necessary for full equality all transgender youth, adults, and families in Massachusetts,” said Nancy Nangeroni, chair of MTPC’s board.

RSVP: http://www.masstpc.org/take-action/current-legislation/legislative-action-day/ 

Signal boost for all you Massachusetts folks!! 

genderplayful:

Genderplayful is a Marketplace unlike any other. We know that fashion and gender are two very different things, despite mainstream media telling us fashion for genders only works ‘one way’. Here at Genderplayful we’re hoping to meet the needs of all body types, gender identities, and presentations. 

If you missed our post yesterday, we’re looking for vendors! Signing up is simple, and once you submit an application our wonderful vendor coordinator Zee will get in touch with you to get your shop set up. We use a storefront that’s Wordpress based, so if you are familiar with Wordpress based templates you’ll have little trouble getting your shop up and running. If you run into problems, rest assured that we’re here to help! 

We need your help (yes, all of you!) to continue to bring Genderplayful to its full potential. We have amazing vendors as it stands right now, but we’d love to see that number grow. If you know someone who is crafty, loves to check out thrift shops for the latest edgy fashion finds, or you’re a crafty type yourself—we’d love to have you fill out an application. Before you do, though, take a minute to read our guidelines so you can make sure we’re your cup of tea. 

Also, if you run a website that matches up with what we’re about, or you think we’d click—we’re looking into doing ad swaps with other like-minded sites! Feel free to email us for more information.  

We know fashion affects everyone on a personal level, and that finding clothes and accessories can often be a hassle when it doesn’t need to be. Here at Genderplayful Marketplace, we’re hoping to have a bazaar that has something for everyone. We can’t do that without your help, so help us spread the word by giving us a signal boost. 

If the answer is yes, please show your support by purchasing a copy of the zine and sharing our tumblr! http://www.magcloud.com/browse/issue/349728 Digital zines are only $4.00! Print zines (with a free digital copy!) are $14.00!

Issue one is full of great stuff, in it you’ll find articles from Project: OUTThe Everyday GayA Note to My KidPink Triangle TheatreThe L Project, tumblr’s own Art of TranslinessJeremiah’s Hope for KindnessVoltaire  Snag a copy today, and when you do, let us know what you think! 

http://justabitradical.com/ is up and running!! The first issue is available for sale, and there’s so much awesome stuff in it…Interviews from Project: OUTThe L ProjectA Note to My Kid,VoltaireArt of TranslinessPink Triangle TheatreJeremiah’s Hope for Kindness…the list goes on. Check it out and grab a copy! Thank you to EVERYONE that helped with this. We wouldn’t be here without you!

Who has the full rough draft of the magazine?
 I doooo, and it’s so shinnyyy.


Also, go check out our Facebook page. It needs more love in the form of ‘Likes’.

https://www.facebook.com/justabitradicalmag

Going to go squee some more!