6/14/13

Social Security Administration (SSA) No Longer Requiring Surgery or BC for Gender Marker Change!

I went to the Texas SSA office on a hot Friday August afternoon in 2007 on a mission. My terminal manager was getting pressure from the main office to correct a discrepancy in an employees records. My record. I am a MTF whose gender was unrecognized by the SSA. Within a month his requests had turned into a demand. I had to get the SSA to stop sending the payroll department gender"no match" letters or risk losing my job.

I had been able to change everything except my birth state, Ohio, does not amend or reissue birth certificates for transsexuals. Since I was pre op and couldn't produce proof of SRS I was left with only one option. A friend had told me I might be able to get the change through on the QT, as she did, if I did it as directed. So I passively, submissively  approached the SSA window after a short 3 hour wait, smiling in my most pleasant feminine way and explained what I wanted.

Well long story short the clerk produced the regulation denying my gender marker change a couple of hours later and I left unsuccessful and soon to be unemployed. A couple of years later after Obama was elected he directed the SSA to stop sending out those no match letters, but that was too late for me. I lost a $900 a week job because of that bureaucratic bullshit.

And I know I'm only one among thousands of trans people who have had their jobs put in jeopardy thanks to a government which seemed to not care.

I have great news! My brothers and sisters, you will not have to become unemployed and homeless as I did to satisfy that antiquated bureaucratic rule.

According to The National Center For Transgender Equality as of June:

Social Security will accept any of the following forms of evidence for a gender marker change:

• A U.S. passport showing the correct gender,
• A birth certificate showing the correct gender,
• A court order recognizing the correct gender, or
• A signed letter from a [provider] confirming that you have had appropriate clinical treatment for gender transition

You can view the official SSA regulation here.

The Pew LGBT Report Ignores The Transgender Experience

Listening to public radio last night on my MP3 while at work in a shipping department I became increasingly disturbed about a PBS show, which I embedded below,  about the recent Pew Report which conducted a first of a kind spectrum wide survey of LGBT people.

I became immediately distraught by the framing the survey with what transgender people perceive as a gay issue, the upcoming supreme court ruling on same sex marriage. What further distressed me was how little the survey acutely reflected my experiences as a transgender woman with nearly 10 years of living authentically.

It really makes me wonder. Did the survey results include the 5% of the LGBT population that is transgender? I do not see evidence transgender people were asked questions based on their gender expression. It appears the results were grouped by sexual orientation regardless of gender expression.

I don't believe the Pew Report properly reflects the transgender experence because it fails to survey us as a separate component of the LGBT population.

I for one have faced and continue to face discrimination at work mainly because many of my supervisors religious beliefs. I have been told "No Way" when asking about a pathway out of shipping to a higher paying job and have been the victim of vicious  rumors since starting there. I have been physically threatened twice with physical harm in the last year at work. I have been harassed by the management and there employees at my apartment. For all this I think it we have made progress but nothing like the Pew Report suggests.

A much more accurate survey for transgender people was conducted by the National Center for Transgender Equality Injustice at every turn.

Zoey Tur Famed LA News Copter Pilot Comes Out as Transgender

Los Angeles helicopter pilot-reporter Zoey (Bob) Tur, who covered the L.A. riots and the O.J. Simpson freeway chase has announced she is transgender.

Tur the lone pilot who dared fly above the LA Riots says she has started taking HRT 30 days ago. She says her life has already started to change and expects major changes within the first year. Tur says her name change is forthcoming is addressed by her birth name and male pronouns during the MP3 interview and the embedded CBS video.. According to Tur, transsexualism a genetic change that occurs in the embryonic state that is yet to be understood.