UK: New Department of Health Publications on Trans-Themes
The Department of Health's "Guide for Young Trans People in the UK" is one of the most progressive works of its kind to come out of an establishment source, and it's been beautifully produced with the skills and resources of the Central Office of Information. The words are all those of the young trans people in the project themselves -- so are the fantastic illustrations. The text is very inclusive, promoting a wide and person-centred interpretation of what trans categories mean to individual young people, rather than imposing a taxonomy upon them. Young people reading the guide are presented with options to think about, including an explanation of the role of hormone blockers vs cross sex hormones -- and we even managed to find a form of words for talking about internet hormones in a way that doesn't simply say "don't do that". The result, I think, is immensely exciting. Indeed I'm sure some may also find it really quite radical!
All Department of Health / NHS publications are available in PDF form these days, so the potential for all these documents is global. They are so new (delivered by taxi to yesterday's conference) that they're not on the web yet. However I hope we'll be able to update people with the URLs very soon.
Now I must pack up my laptop as I have another speech to give today, to the UK's Ambulance Services Association. I'm explaining what gender is, within the context of the UK's statutory public sector gender equality duty, which comes into effect on the 30th. This requires ALL public bodies to be proactive in what they do to assure equality of employment, goods and services provision for ALL men and women (trans included). My first slide features Tyra Hunter -- her face appears on the closing slide too. In between the message is all rather more positive; however it seemed fitting to build this particular presentation around the shame of what happened to her.
Subject: UK: New Department of Health Publications on Trans-Themes
Today's Third Annual Stakeholder Event organised by the Department of Health's Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Advisory Group saw the launch of three brand new publications relating to trans people and their lives. These are part of a series of research and educational initiatives initiated by the SOGIAG trans workstream, with more to follow in the months ahead:
"Bereavement: A Guide for Transsexual, Transgender people and their loved ones"
...is a detailed 38 page glossy booklet, produced under the DH and NHS logos, providing detailed advice for trans people, significant others and professional staff at all levels when dealing with the death of a trans person, or someone they are close to. The booklet is a sister publication to the more general "Help is at Hand", which deals in the broader advice issues for ANYONE bereaved by the sudden death of someone close to them.
As with todays other publication launches, the trans bereavement guide is literally hot off the press, having been printed in the last couple of days. It has a product code 281087 and should be available online soon from the Department's publication web site: www.dh.gov.uk/publications . You may need to wait a few days for the online version to appear there though.
"A Guide for Young Trans People in the UK"
...is probably a "first" in at least three ways. It's certainly the first NHS published guide offering advice to anyone on what it is to be trans, and the many forms that can take. It's definitely the first guide from an 'official' source dealing specifically with the issues affecting YOUNG trans people. Last, but not least, it also breaks new ground in having actually been written by young trans-identified people themselves.
As with the bereavement guide, the young people's booklet can be ordered as product number 281091 and should be available soon online. Copies are also being sent directly to youth groups around the country as part of the SOGIAG-funded contract that produced it.
"An Introduction To Working With Transgender People"
...is really a taste of things yet to come for adults later this year, as a separate project to develop help and advice literature for primary care professionals and patients bears fruit. In the meantime this simple and colourful A5 leaflet tells healthworkers at all levels ten basic facts about transsexual, transgender and other gender variant people, so as to begin breaking down misconceptions and some of the fears that often accompany them. A sister guide conveying ten similarly basic messages about LGB people is designed to help staff compare and contrast the two different population groups. The transgender leaflet has stock code 278143-B and the LGB leaflet is 278143-A.
Today's presentations at the SOGIAG stakeholder meeting have been digitally recorded and, once the speaker contributions have been extracted into individual audio files we will be making them available on the PFC web site's audio page. The reactions and views of some of the people who took part were also recorded afterwards and these will be added over the next few weeks too, building comprehensive coverage of the event for everyone to enjoy, even if you couldn't be there.
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