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Being a Stronger Ally, Trans, GNC Business Workshop Feb. 6, 7
2019-01-31

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CHICAGO ( Jan. 30, 2019 ): The Andersonville Chamber of Commerce ( ACC ), along with Praxis Group and Upswing Advocates, will host a workshop next week focused on inclusive terminology, respectful customer service, and identifying steps in supporting local businesses to become transgender and gender non-conforming ( GNC ) affirming establishments. The workshop will take place at Reza's Restaurant ( 5255 N Clark ) on February 6 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and February 7 from 3:30 pm. to 5:30 p.m. Both workshop dates will cover the same content. "According to a 2016 Equality Survey, 82% of trans and GNC guests have been misgendered in the past year in a hotel, restaurant, store, bank or other public space," say both Praxis and Upswing. "With nearly 50,000 trans and GNC people in the State of Illinois, this workshop will provide businesses with the tools to create safe and welcoming spaces for trans and GNC community."

During the workshop, business owners and their employees will learn proper terminology, practice its use, and hear stories from transgender and GNC people regarding their experiences with businesses. They will also receive a resource packet including the following materials: an LGBTQ vocabulary list; safe space and gender-neutral bathroom decals; and best practices for supporting transgender and GNC customers, colleagues and community members.

"Andersonville has always been a safe and welcoming community," shares Sara Dinges, ACC Executive Director. "However, there is still more work to do to ensure our business community serves the T/GNC community in safe and welcoming ways. We are eager to build on Andersonville's past and make our community's future even brighter for all."

The workshop is free to all Chamber member business owners, employees and non-profits. Tickets are $20 for non-members. Register in advance at andersonville.org for the February 6 and February 7 sessions. Registration deadline is February 4, 2019. This workshop has been made possible by the generous donations of supporters: Artis Senior Living, Jameson Loves Danger, Metz + Jones, LLC, RE:chiropractic + wellness, State Representative Kelly Cassidy, and State Representative Greg Harris.

The workshop was established by Andersonville's newly formed Trans/GNC-Affirming Business Task Force, comprised of representatives of the local business community.

Andersonville Chamber of Commerce fosters a vibrant environment in which Andersonville businesses can thrive by attracting a diverse customer base; providing business support services and advocacy; and engaging in business attraction, long-range planning, and economic development.

Praxis Group is a Chicago-based consulting group that works to redefine group and organizational cultures so that people of all identities feel empowered to bring their full selves to the table. Praxis Group centers the knowledge and experiences of queer people, trans and nonbinary people, people of color, women, and femmes.

The mission of Upswing Advocates is to use a self-as-expert approach to research and education that strengthens and supports the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, and Asexual ( LGBTQIA ) community in Chicago and the surrounding areas. Upswing envisions freely available and affordable treatments and services that are tailored to the LGBTQIA community that are empirically supported by data-based, community-informed research.

—From a press release


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