Highline Public Schools Board, Washington State (USA)

The Highline Public Schools Board voted to adopt a policy with regard to transgender students, joining at least half a dozen others in Washington, including Aberdeen and Sequim, that have adopted formal policies on accommodating transgender students in the past year alone.

In 2011, the state legislature required districts to adopt these rules, in part to protect gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) students. But several districts approached experts at the Washington State School Directors Association, asking for more specific guidance on how to handle issues with transgender students.

Audio of this story appears here.

Highline Schools The Latest Wash

Talipov v. Holder (USA)

Bakhrom Talipov is a Man who identifies as a Woman named Victoria Jacobs. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit recently upheld a denial of her asylum petition. Jacobs claims that if she is sent back to Uzbekistan, she will be harmed. Unfortunately, Jacobs did not raise her claim of persecution because of transgender status at the outset of her asylum claim, so the federal appellate court held that the Board of Immigration Appeals  did not abuse its discretion in denying reopening based on the evidence concerning Talipov’s male-to-female transgender identity.

Talipov v. Holder.

Ashley Yang (USA)

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Ashley Yang is a transgender woman fired from a job at the Transportation Security Administration because of gender identity discrimination. Yang objected to being told to pat down male passengers. We understand Yang’s objections, as they are similar to those of Women TSA agents asked to pat down Transwomen, or Women being subjected to pat down searches by Transwomen.

Ashley Yang, transgendered former TSA agent, was forced to pat down male passengers_ suit – NY Daily News.

John Kitzhaber @GovKitz @KitzhaberNews & Basic Rights Oregon @basicrights (USA)

Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber
Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber

Basic Rights Oregon has been waging a stealth campaign to change sex marker policy for an Oregon driver’s license. Currently, a person needs to present a document to the Department of Motor Vehicles signed by a therapist stating that the applicant is living “full time” as the opposite sex (based, of course, on sex stereotypes) or other documentation that the applicant has had sex reassignment surgery. The Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles maintains a list of about 50 approved practitioners whose letters will be accepted. That situation is going to change starting next month.  The DMV will still require a therapist’s letter, but there is now no list of approved practitioners. Essentially, anyone practicing as a therapist can write a letter, no matter their specialty or qualifications, so there will be no standards. 

Of even greater significance is a new policy where anyone can change their sex marker with nothing needed but their own declaration. Under the policy, anyone can change their sex marker as many times as they want, as often as they want, with no age limits and no parental consent needed for minors. Here is a mockup of the new gender change form, and there really is no requirement to prove anything:

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According to our source, Basic Rights Oregon has met with Governor John Kitzhaber, who supports the measure. Here are 5 pages of an internal memorandum from Basic Rights Oregon to the Oregon Department of Transportation detailing the plan.  Basic Rights Oregon has spun this as a chance for the Oregon DMV to “be the first state in the nation to be a leader in adopting a self-attestation policy” for transgender people.

Internal Basic Rights Oregon Memo on Gender Designation Process for Oregon Driver License and Oregon Identification Card

Internal Basic Rights Oregon Memo on Gender Designation Process for Oregon Driver License and Oregon Identification Card Page 2

Internal Basic Rights Oregon Memo on Gender Designation Process for Oregon Driver License and Oregon Identification Card Page 3

Internal Basic Rights Oregon Memo on Gender Designation Process for Oregon Driver License and Oregon Identification Card Page 4

Internal Basic Rights Oregon Memo on Gender Designation Process for Oregon Driver License and Oregon Identification Card Page 5

Reid v. Kelly (USA)

reidAndrew Paul Reid beat a man to death with a baseball bat and is incarcerated. He filed a lawsuit against the prison, claiming that he cut off one of his testicles and that the prison was indifferent to his gender dysphoria. The court recently denied his motion for summary judgment. The court also refused to allow him to change his name to Andrea Lea.

Reid v. Kelly Name Change

Reid v. Kelly Order

Reid v. Kelly Recommendations

#tdor #tdor2014 Transgender Violence Tracking Project @TransHarmTrack @heathersze (USA)

The Transgender Violence Tracking Project has issued its “Annual Report” of the number of transgender people murdered in 2014. The report fails to note that in all instances, it is Men who kill transgender people.

Failure to name the perpetrator of violence against transgender people obscures the cause of this lethal violence. We believe that one can only solve a problem if one names it.

Transgender Violence Tracking Project releases their annual Violence report – Los Angeles lgbt issues _ Examiner

Abuzar Chaudhary, Toronto Trans Alliance @TorTransAlli & @TransHarmTrack (Canada)

8968_390263877816843_5875600611265471713_nAbuzar Chaudhary harassed women at Radfem RiseUp in Toronto, Ontario in 2013.  He has also been ordered to stay away from the University of Toronto for abusive behavior.  He thinks men’s public masturbation and anonymous sex in parks is a strategy for liberation.

He has now drawn the ire of Dennis Woolbert of the Transgender Violence Tracking because Chaudhary organized a protest of the Toronto Trans Alliance’s Transgender Day of Remembrance event for failing to properly include transwomen of color.

Woolbert – a white heterosexual Man – indicates he will retaliate against transgender people for protesting an event they feel does not properly reflect the community.

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Transgender Day of Remembrance #tdor @gwenners (International)

The Transgender Day of Remembrance is an event created by Gwen Smith held each year on November 20. The event raises awareness of violence against transgender people. It misses, however, the opportunity to create solidarity with Women by failing to note that it is Men who commit violence against transgender people in overwhelming numbers.

We look forward to the day when transgender activists are willing to speak honestly about the perpetrators of violence against transgender people. We have been heartened in recent years by a growing recognition that it is primarily transgender Women of color, some of whom engage in prostitution with Men, who are killed by Men.