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Tell HUD that #HousingSavesLives and Speak Out to Oppose Its Anti-Transgender Proposal

September 04, 2020 12:00 AM - 12:00 AM

Week of Action from August 31 to September 4

The Trump administration is once again attacking LGBTQ people, this time by removing critical equal access protections and regulations for transgender people. The administration’s proposed rule change to the Equal Access Rule is an egregious attempt to prevent transgender people from accessing federally funded emergency shelters and services.

Join NLIHC and other national partners of the Housing Saves Lives campaign are hosting a Week of Action from August 31 to September 4 to oppose HUD’s anti-transgender rule and encourage advocates to submit public comments in opposition to the rule by the September 22 deadline. Please go to HousingSavesLives.org for more information and updates on the week’s events!

National Events for the Week of Action


Monday August 31, 11 am ET National Press Call

NLIHC will be hosting a National Press Call on August 31 at 11 am ET to discuss the administration’s discriminatory changes to the Equal Access Rule. Invited guest speakers include: Representative Jennifer Wexton (D-VA), True Colors United Public Policy and External Affairs Director Dylan Waguespack, National Women’s Law Center Media Manager Gillian Branstetter, and NLIHC President and CEO Diane Yentel. Please contact NLIHC’s Xavier Arriaga at [email protected] for more information.

August 31, 2 pm ET National Webinar: “Take Action for the Housing Needs of Transgender Communities”

The National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development will host a webinar with national partners from the housing and LGBTQ movement, as well as local Asian American and Pacific Islander transgender community leaders, for a discussion on housing, homelessness, and transgender community needs. Register at: https://bit.ly/32xL9TS


Tuesday September 1, 11 am ET National Twitterstorm

Join the campaign on September 1 at 11 am ET for a national Twitterstorm. Use #HousingSavesLives to encourage individuals and organizations to submit their comments to oppose the rule change. Talking points and social media posts can be found below.


Wednesday September 2, 2 pm ET National Webinar for Youth Service Providers

Youth CollaboratoryA Way Home America, and True Colors United will host a webinar on September 2 at 2 pm ET on the harmful changes to the Equal Access Rule, the impact on transgender young people and local programs, and actions you can take action to stop this dangerous proposal. Register at: https://bit.ly/3j5fJef


Thursday September 3, 3 pm ET National Briefing for Religious Leaders

Americans United for Separation of Church and State will host a legal advocacy briefing for religious leaders to take action in response to the HUD Anti-Trans Shelter Proposed Rule. Speakers include Sarah Hassmer, senior counsel-income security at the National Women's Law Center; Reverend Cedric Harmon, executive director of Many Voices; and Reverend Alex Patchin McNeill, executive director of More Light Presbyterians. Register at: https://bit.ly/2Ew4ywo


How You Can Get Involved
  1. Host events during the Week of Action to help advocates submit comments in opposition to HUD’s anti-transgender rule before the September 22 deadline.
  2. Submit your public comment opposing the rule directly at HousingSavesLives.org
  3. Share this Save the Date with your network and other advocates
  4. Keep an eye out for updates and upcoming events from the Housing Saves Lives campaign
Sample Social Media Posts for the Week of Action

We all pay the price when it comes to government-sanctioned discrimination. Share your comments and 🚨 ACTION ALERT! 🚨 Tell Trump and @HUDGov you oppose their plans to cut protections for unhoused #trans siblings. Submit your comment now at housingsaveslives.org

We have less than 30 days to tell President Trump and @HUDgov that their plans to cut protections for our unhoused trans neighbors won't stand. Submit your comment now and tell them #HousingSavesLives at housingsaveslives.org

The Trump administration is trying to remove safety protections for trans people in need of HUD assistance and at homeless shelters. This roll-back would allow discrimination when trans people need help the most. #HousingSavesLives! Submit your comment at housingsaveslives.org

We all pay the price when it comes to government-sanctioned discrimination. Share your comments and help us create a wave of opposition to reject HUD's dangerous proposal to cut housing protections for trans people. #HousingSavesLiveshousingsaveslives.org

Background

Under HUD’s 2016 Equal Access Rule, all federally funded housing, facilities, and services must ensure equal access to programs, benefits, services, and accommodations for all individuals regardless of gender identity and without intrusive questioning or documentation requirements. This rule improved the treatment of transgender and gender non-conforming individuals without homes, allowing them to safely secure shelter and emergency services without being turned away due to discrimination.

HUD Secretary Ben Carson’s proposed rule would remove anti-discrimination protections for transgender people seeking shelter by allowing shelter providers to refuse services to them based solely on their gender identity. HUD justifies the proposal by citing “religious freedom” and supposed privacy and safety concerns rooted in negative stereotypes rather than on evidence.

The Equal Access Rule’s protections against discrimination are critical to ensure safe access to shelter for transgender people experiencing homelessness. Protecting transgender people’s access to gender-specific facilities does not endanger the safety or privacy of others. Discrimination is never okay, but this proposal is particularly dangerous as our nation continues to struggle to control the coronavirus pandemic. 

NLIHC, True Colors United, National LGBTQ Task Force, National Housing Law Project, and other national organizations have launched the Housing Saves Lives campaign to oppose this anti-transgender rule. Advocacy tools and resources – including a portal to submit your public comment by the September 22 deadline – are available at HousingSavesLives.org.