As Polar Vortex Grips East Coast, HUD Announces New Guidance for Transgender Shelter Access

New Guidance Addresses Access to Shelters for Transgender People Experiencing Homelessness

WASHINGTON, DC, February 20, 2015 — Today, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) released new guidance addressing access to shelters for transgender people experiencing homelessness.

“As cities across the nation face record breaking freezing temperatures, we are reminded that there are still too many people experiencing homelessness that aren’t able to safely access shelters because of who they are. For many transgender people — of whom 53 percent report being verbally harassed or disrespected in a place of public accommodation — and specifically those experiencing homelessness, the challenge of keeping warm and safe this winter is all too real,” said Rea Carey, National LGBTQ Task Force Executive Director.

“The National LGBTQ Task Force welcomes HUD’s new guidance, which clarifies nondiscrimination protections for transgender people attempting to access homeless shelters. This is a very important step in the right direction, and we urge HUD to build on this guidance with regulations that ensure that not a single person experiencing homelessness is involuntarily assigned to housing inconsistent with their gender identity.”

According the National Transgender Discrimination Survey, one-fifth of transgender people report experiencing homelessness at some point in their life. The report also found that transgender people are four times as likely to live in extreme poverty (earning less than $10,000 a year). In general, and across the country, 20-40 percent of homeless youth identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer (LGBTQ).


To learn more about the National LGBTQ Task Force, follow us on Twitter: @TheTaskForce.

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