( June 8, 2017 | Chicago, IL ) — Recognizing the detrimental impact health reform repeal would have on the LGBT community, Howard Brown Health will participate in transgender lobby days in Washington, DC to fight for passage of the Equality Act and focus on lawmaker opposition to the America Health Care Act. Crispin Torres, Legislative and Policy Advocate for Howard Brown, will represent the Chicago region at the event that will draw transgender activists and allies from nearly 40 states and territories.
"I will meet with congressional representatives and emphasize how the Equality Act could greatly benefit the lives of trans and gender non-conforming people in Illinois and beyond," said Torres. "I will also emphasize the provisions in the American Health Care Act that could put transgender people in jeopardy. The trans community experiences barriers to services and even hostility and extreme violence in many areas of life. Our leaders in Washington should work to protect our community from violence and discrimination through inclusive laws and comprehensive healthcare reform."
On behalf of Howard Brown Health, Torres will be representing trans and gender non-conforming people in Illinois during a two-day lobby event hosted by the National Center for Transgender Equality. Entitled Trans Lobby Day, the event will equip participants with skills and information to advocate for policies to preserve rights and protections for nearly 1.5 million trans Americans. Transgender Lobby Day will occur June 8 -9 in Washington, DC. More information is available atwww.transequality.org/TransLobbyDay
The Equality Act would ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity in the areas of employment, housing, and public accommodations. Torres will also emphasize the harmful provisions for LGBTQ people in the American Health Care Act, which would strip millions of Americans of vital healthcare coverage.
"Trans rights are human rights, and I'm proud to represent Howard Brown Health, Chicago, and Illinois during Trans Lobby Day," continued Torres. "Now is the time to urge our representatives in Congress to support protections and freedoms for trans and gender non-conforming people. Every discriminatory bathroom bill and any exclusion of gender identity from equal protections harms trans people and places us at risk for violence and discrimination."
While at Transgender Lobby Day, participants will hear from speakers, experts and political officials to help them battle anti-trans bills at the state and federal levels, before meeting with their elected officials.
According to the Williams Institute, Illinois has anywhere between four and 11 thousand trans and gender non-conforming residents.