CLICK TO SHARE
Transgender and gender non-conforming people could soon be barred from federally funded shelters, after the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced plans Wednesday to scrap recently added regulator protections.
HUD’s rulemaking would rescind the Equal Access Rule that currently requires shelters that wish to segregate clients according to their gender to modify their structures accordingly – rather than turn people away.
Homeless shelters serve a particularly crucial role in protecting the lives and safety of gender minorities, who are often put out on the street early in life by intolerant families and are frequent targets for violent bigots once they find themselves in such a vulnerable situation. The Equal Access Rule, enacted in 2012, has been heralded as an essential protection by hundreds of advocacy groups concerned by this cycle of abandonment and violence.
The rulemaking notice concludes with language promising that the new policy would somehow maintain the protections enshrined in the rule the agency is looking to scrap. However, that sentence is a fig-leaf: To allow shelters to “conside[r] an individual’s sex for the purposes of determining accommodation…and…admission,” as the notice describes the forthcoming rule, is to allow federally-funded shelters to refuse to serve people.
“The programs impacted by this rule are life-saving for transgender people, particularly youth rejected by their families,” Mara Keisling, head of the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE), said in a statement. “[A] lack of stable housing fuels the violence and abuse that takes the lives of many transgender people of color across the country.”
Post a comment.
CLICK TO SHARE