Much of this research I compiled back in 2014. While some of these numbers may have gone up or down over the past few years, the data is still staggering and a reminder that we must do better!
During my research on transgender discrimination, one of the studies I came across involved using mixed method models on peer violence and bullying against transgender and gender nonconforming youth. A deeper understanding and awareness for transgender individuals has become exponentially more prominent in today’s society, so has the attention focused on people who identify as the opposite gender then the one assigned to them at birth at younger ages. Gender identity, we’ve learned, is something everyone can conform to at a very young age, unlike sexuality which develops just a little bit later in life. As media focus and overall awareness began to shift in towards the transgender community in 2014, discrimination and bullying would also become more common as a result.
This particular study shows the hard reality most transgender individuals will come to know at some capacity. What it found was that 26% of transgender and nongender-conforming adults will often face situations of being fired, 19% will be denied housing and refused medical care, and 11% even face being evicted from their homes because of their gender identity. The trouble starts before adulthood, though, as the study revealed that most transgender 6th through 12th graders often experience a very hostile school environment with daily harassment. According to my research, 82% of these transgender youth said they felt unsafe at school, an overwhelming amount by any standard. These youth are also subject to transphobic harassment from peers involving physical contact and other forms of physical harassment; While 44% said they were punched, kicked or injured with a weapon at least once in the last year. (National Center For Transgender Equality, 2011)
Another study focused on using action research identified and address issues affecting LGBTQ youth. Their goals were to develop new community programs among urban LGBTQ youth of color while also increasing their knowledge of resources that are available to them. This study was conducted over 2002-2003 school years. During that time, they gathered information on the critical issues that youth face, mostly with African-American and Puerto Rican youth. They divided youth into two teams where they were given extensive training. However, in the end, the research itself was really inconclusive because they really do not give the outcomes or results of their action study. Knowing and understanding the problems trans youth face is only the first step in figuring out a solution to the issues of discrimination and bullying. So, in my opinion, I think this is definitely a topic that warrants a whole lot more attention and research as future generations grow and the relationship between gender identity and social conformity becomes more complex. (Rodriguez, 2002-2003)
- Riel, M. (n.d.). Understanding action research. Retrieved from http://cadres.pepperdine.edu/ccar/define.html\
- dedoose. (n.d.). What is mixed methods research?. Retrieved from http://blog.dedoose.com/2012/10/what-is-mixed-methods-research/
- National Center For Transgender Equality. (2011, May). Peer violence and bullying against transgender and gender nonconforming youth. Retrieved from http://www.transequality.org/PDFs/US Civ Rts Commn NCTE statement 5 6 11.pdf
- Rodriguez, C. (2002-2003). Sexual minority youth action research project. Retrieved from http://www.incommunityresearch.org/research/smy.htm