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A Statement from Tahirih’s Queer & Trans Caucus:

Pride Month is celebrated during June to commemorate the Stonewall Riots of June 1969, when queer folk in New York City pushed back against police brutality and demanded equal rights. 53 years later, the LGBTQIA+ community is still facing persecution and injustice around the world, including here in the United States. We are alarmed by the trends we’ve seen lately of violence and discrimination towards the LGBTQIA+ community. People are dying and being denied the basic care they need to survive.

In the face of this continued adversity, Pride provides us an opportunity to uplift queer joy and all the beautiful identities of the LGBTQIA+ community. We share this joy with you today to rise above hate, and to highlight some of the important work being done by the LGBTQIA+ community.

On May 25, 2023, trans, queer and nonbinary youth descended upon our nation’s capital for Trans Prom, a celebration of being trans. Created by four teens, Trans Prom provided a dreamy, affirming, and joyful space for kids and teens to simply be kids. Trans Prom was simultaneously an act of joy and of protest, well in the spirit of the Stonewall Riots.

While policies restricting the rights of trans and queer people have been prominent in the news, states have also passed laws protecting the LGBTQIA+ community. In March, Michigan became the 22nd State in the US to pass LGBTQIA+ non-discrimination protections into law. In April, Minnesota’s Governor signed a series of laws providing protections for access to gender-affirming and reproductive health care and banning the discredited practice of conversion therapy.

Members of the queer community have been leaders historically in many activist movements and that work continues today. In the immigrant community, here are some of the incredible organizations working at the intersection of LGBTQIA+ rights and immigrant rights.

  • Familia: Trans Queer Liberation Movement works at local and national levels to achieve the collective liberation of trans, queer, and gender nonconforming Latinés through building community, organizing, advocacy, and education.  
  • The Black LGBTQIA+ Migrant Project (BLMP) uses leadership development, capacity building, and organizing to address the ways which Black LGBTQIA+ migrants are targeted by the criminal law and immigration enforcement systems and marginalized in the broader migrant community and racial and economic justice movements.  
  • United We Dream is the largest immigrant youth-led community in the country. Over 60% of its members are womxn and 20% identify as LGBTQIA+. Their vision is a society which celebrates diversity, and they believe in leading a multi-ethnic, intersectional path to get there.  
  • The UndocuBlack Network (UBN) is a network of currently and formerly undocumented Black people that fosters community, facilitates access to resources, and contributes to transforming the realities of our people, so we are thriving and living our fullest lives. At their breakout event, The Undocumented and Black Convening in January 2016, the UBN’s queer caucus learned that some of their LGBTQ attendees were homeless. The caucus sprang into action and started a fundraiser that collected over $1,000 in under 2 hours. The UBN continues to advocate for the undocumented Black community and uplift its stories with the ultimate vision of having a truly inclusive immigrant rights and racial justice movement that advocates for the rights of Black undocumented individuals, provides healing space and a community to those with intersecting identities.  
  • LGBT Freedom and Asylum Network is an all-volunteer network of individuals and organizations throughout the United States who are dedicated to helping people who are seeking safety in the U.S. because of persecution based on their sexual orientation or gender identity in their home countries.  
  • The Organizacion Latina Trans in Texas is dedicated to ensuring, protecting, and defending the human rights of all trans, gender-nonconforming, and LGBTQIA+ people in Texas. With over 300 active members of the trans Latiné community in Houston, they work towards intersectional advocacy, solidarity, and empowerment by providing direct aid, emergency shelter, access to services, and a physical meeting space.   
  • The LGBT Asylum Project is the only San Francisco nonprofit organization exclusively dedicated to providing accessible legal representation for LGBT asylum seekers who are fleeing persecution due to their sexual orientation, gender identity and/or HIV status.  
  • El/La Para Trans Latinas has been an advocate in the transgender community seeking justice for translatinas for more than 25 years. “El/La works to build a collective vision and actions to promote transgender survival against violence and disease in the San Francisco Bay Area.” 
  • UnLocal’s Queer Immigrant Justice Project (QIJP) provides LGBTQ+ affirming legal representation for LGBTQ+ immigrants. QIJP addresses the intersectional needs of immigrants that identify as part of the LGBTQ+ community vulnerable to being victims of crime, abuse, human trafficking, and other forms of violence. 
  • Whitman-Walker Health is a Washington DC community health center specializing in HIV/AIDS care and lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender care. Whitman-Walker Health is home to one of the nation’s oldest medical-legal partnerships and offers legal services as part of its integrated health centers. Tahirih is proud to partner with them to serve our clients in the Greater DC region.