Outten & Golden: Empowering Employees in the Workplace

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'Harsh Reality' of Workplaces for Transgender Americans Examined in New Report

Thursday, September 12th, 2013

seiu-org-logoTransgender workers are up against alarming inequities in the American workplace today–facing difficulty finding and keeping good jobs, accessing benefits and obtaining health insurance, according to a new report from the Movement Advancement Project (MAP), the National Center for Transgender Equity (NCTE), the Center for American Progress (CAP) and the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), all SEIU partner organizations.

The study, “A Broken Bargain for Transgender Workers,”notes that transgender workers report unemployment at twice the rate of the population as a whole (14 percent versus 7 percent); nearly half of transgender people who are working are underemployed; and transgender workers are nearly four times more likely than the population as a whole to have a household income of under $10,000.

Examples of transgender discrimination range from wage disparities and the inability to update identity documents to denial of promotions and unfair firing.

“Workplace fairness means more than freedom from harassment; it means equal access to the benefits that transgender employees need to live healthy and productive lives,” said Winnie Stachelberg, executive vice president of external affairs at CAP.

“This new report underscores the harsh reality of what it means to live and work as a transgender person in this country,” said Mara Keisling, executive director of NCTE.
Read the report (PDF) or learn more.

SEIU members at the union’s 25th Convention in Denver last year unanimously approved a resolution calling on local unions to bargain for trans-inclusive health care.

Other partners supporting the report are Freedom to Work, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and Out and Equal Workplace Advocates.

This article was originally printed on SEIU on September 6, 2013.  Reprinted with permission.

Author: Beau Boughamer for SEIU.

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