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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Gender Issues » Any advice?

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Author Topic: Any advice?
Calvin
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Hi
I hope this is the right forum for this post...
At university, I'm on the committee of the LGB (I think they are called GSA's in the US? LGB stands for lesbian, gay and bisexual). Anyway, we're changing our remit to cover trans issues as well, so to make ourselves the LGBT.
We're doing a bit of research, and I was just wondering what people here see as the top issues that are worth dealing with (we are running our annual awareness week in Feb, and that's when we're officially changing ourselves). We don't know if anybody at the university has any issues with this at all, and we aren't going to know until we've actually advertised our change - so we want to get it right from the start!
Any help would be appreciated. Has anyone here been involved in a society that did anything similar?

(I used to be registered here about 4 years ago as Clav - if anyone remembers that far back - but have forgotten my password and changed email addresses!)


Posts: 3 | From: UK | Registered: Jan 2004  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
lucylu458
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i think some issues to deal with could be homophobics, gay partnerships, how to tell your friends that your gay, etc. those are pretty important issues when it comes to being gay or lesbian or talking about it. i hope that helped! good luck!

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logic_grrl
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lucylu, I think Calvin was specifically asking for advice on including transgender/transexual issues.

Sounds like they've already got the L, G and B stuff covered .


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lucylu458
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o, sorry, i sort of missed the question, but i tried the best i could, being an Activist and all


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logic_grrl
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Being an Activist just means you've posted a certain number of posts. It doesn't mean that you have to go round trying to answer all the questions posted on the board , especially if you don't actually have the information needed.
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Calvin
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hi, yeah it's the transgender/transexual issues that I'm after - as logic_grrl said we're ok on the L, G and B issues - hence our diversification!
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logic_grrl
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Obviously, the best people to tell you what the top issues are for them will be transsexual/transgender students themselves.

But you can help make yourselves supportive and trans-friendly by educating yourselves as much as possible in advance.

If you seem welcoming and open-minded, that makes it more likely that trans students will feel able to step forwards and tell you what they need from the society.

Mostly, it's pretty simple - trans people want their gender identities to be recognized, to have the same rights as other men and women, and to be free from harassment, discrimination and violence. Same as anyone else .

And a lot of issues are about basic politeness and respecting people's identities - e.g. not referring to people by the wrong pronouns or asking them personal questions about genital surgery.

Press For Change is a UK trans rights group with an excellent website full of information on trans issues and the various legal campaigns currently going on in the UK (such as the Gender Recognition Bill).


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sapphirecat
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Besides dealing with outside issues, also watch for internal politics....

I was in the LGBTA at my University (the order of the name is a long story) for a while after they added the T. Most of the members didn't really see the few trans people around, and it just felt like the LGBA with a T added for lip service.

People should be on the lookout for that sort of thing, whether intentional or not, and willing to stand up and point it out.

------------------
Sapphire Cat, a feline who can be both pink and blue...


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Calvin
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Thanks for your advice!
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JackGalvin
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I agree with what has been said about pronoun use. There are a lot of other things people get horribly wrong, though. First, when people think "transgendered" or "transsexual," they often think it's only men who want to become women. There are some of us who do the opposite, we are born in female bodies and live as male instead. They also think we're all gay and lesbian (from the birth-gender point of view, I mean). I've been called "dyke" so many times it's disgusting. I'm a gay transboy, I like guys! And with surgery... I didn't have anything done to me, but people still ask to see my genitals as if I have them on public display or something.

To put it short, don't assume things and don't be bastards.


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