Press Release • July 2, 2020

Equality North Carolina Condemns Trump Administration's Attack On Housing Insecure Transgender Americans

Raleigh – On Thursday, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced that it would propose a rule that would enable emergency shelters for people experiencing homelessness and intimate partner violence to discriminate against transgender and gender non-conforming (GNC) individuals by denying them access to single-sex shelters based on their gender identity.

The new rule would permit HUD-funded shelter programs to deny transgender and GNC individuals entry to single-sex homeless shelters based on the sex they were assigned at birth. This proposed rule would roll back protections from earlier HUD rules in 2012 that protected transgender people seeking emergency housing in homeless and domestic violence shelters.

According to the 2015 U.S. Transgender Survey, 30% of transgender respondents in North Carolina have experienced homelessness at some point in their lives, and 15% of North Carolina respondents who experienced homelessness in the past year avoided staying in a shelter because they feared being mistreated as a transgender person. The announced rule makes that fear more likely to be a harmful reality for many transgender people.

This rule also comes on the heels of another rollback of Obama-era protections for transgender folks in healthcare just weeks ago.

This morning, Kendra R. Johnson, Executive Director of Equality North Carolina, released the following statement:

"This rule is a direct attack on the most vulnerable LGBTQ Americans, particularly Black and Brown transgender folks who are already disproportionately at risk for housing insecurity during this ongoing pandemic. The Trump Administration is continuing to wage a war against transgender and GNC folks by stripping away federal social safety nets one by one. It's imperative that we view these attacks as part of a larger campaign of white supremacy in this country emboldened by the President, and our communities must do everything in our power to fight back against this unjust and unnecessary cruelty directed at our most vulnerable."

Reverend Debra Hopkins of Essentials for Life Ministries in Charlotte, NC, released the following statement:

"As someone who is currently providing housing for 17 Black transgender women in Charlotte, this rule is absolutely atrocious and a targeted attack on our community. In the midst of this pandemic, we should all be coming together to help save lives and provide shelter for those that need it most -- not taking away the few outlets trans women of color have to find housing security. Unemployment is skyrocketing and we're fighting for our lives on a daily basis -- the Trump administration has made it clear that they don't care about us."


Equality NC is dedicated to securing equal rights and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) North Carolinians.

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