As LGBTQ+ organizations in West Michigan, we stand united in opposition to the nearly 400 pieces of anti-LGBTQ+ and specifically anti-transgender legislation introduced across this nation.
We fight for a country that is inclusive, equitable, and respectful of all people, regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. These bills seek to use the beliefs of some to restrict the rights of others. These bills seek to systemically deny LGBTQ+ folks–especially transgender people–basic human rights, protections, healthcare, identity, and public representation, and to criminalize allies for supporting their right to exist.
In addition to this systemic discrimination, the impact of persistent harassment, violence, exclusion, and hate has devastating impacts on our community. As legislation increases, so does suicide and murder rates for our transgender and gender non-conforming community members, and those numbers are disproportionately Black, Indigenous, and Latiné people. All LGBTQ+ youth are at increased risk of abuse, becoming unhoused, feelings of hopelessness, and self-harm under these conditions. These political attacks have no purpose other than to further stigmatize and harm an already vulnerable population. We refuse to be silent while our fellow community members are attacked and targeted.
We call on all communities who care for human rights to speak up against this life-threatening legislation. It is socially irresponsible to allow those most oppressed by this legislation to fight alone for their own rights to freely exist. Michiganders, this is not just occurring in other places. We need you to fight against the legislative attacks across the country and right here at home.
The recent passing of the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act demonstrates the power of Michiganders working together to ensure our community is protected. While we celebrate this passage, we also recognize the fact that there still remains much work to be done.
Together, we must actively resist this growing threat to LGBTQ+ rights in the US. We must show up. Sitting back in outrage is not an option.
We support and care for all of our LGBTQ+ community members and want to see our entire community thrive. In particular, right now, we recognize the existential threat to our transgender siblings and want you to know: we see you, we hear you, and we stand with you. You are strong and beautiful and fierce, and we will continue to fight for your rights and towards a world where we can all live freely and authentically, without fear of discrimination or harm.
Thank you for advocating alongside us!
Grand Rapids Pride Center
Grand Rapids Trans Foundation
GR LGBTQ+ Healthcare Consortium
River City Psychological Services
For more information, please read/watch:
- Anti-trans Legislation Tracker
- Health Impact of Discrimination on Trans People
- HRC Explains Gender-Affirming Care
- Ways to be an informed advocate for trans people
- Trans Lifeline Resources
- Black Trans Resources
To send a thank you note to Gov. Whitmer about passing Elliott-Larsen, please go here!