September 17, 2010


Taking stock of transgender equity and inclusion at Emory

A panel of students, staff and faculty came together to provide different perspectives at the Emory Transgender Town Hall on Sept. 13. 

“The purpose of the town hall is for us as a community to come down and talk about our collective journey toward full trans-equity and inclusion at Emory University,” says Michael Shutt, director of the Office of LGBT Life, which co-sponsored the event with the Center for Women and the President's Commission on Sexuality, Gender Diversity and Queer Equality.  

Featured speaker Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center on Transgender Equality, opened the discussion by reflecting on the history of transgender equality.  

“The word transgender was developed in the ’80s and at that point there was no American transgender movement. Even today I’m not sure if there really is a movement, but we do have tens of thousands of people, including people on this campus, working very hard,” Keisling said.  

Many different issues were brought up relating to transgender equality on campus, including health care exclusion and Emory’s non-discrimination policy. The panel noted progress made and acknowledged problems still waiting to be solved.  

“I don’t get to be on college campuses that much where we get the student body president, vice president of human resources and the director of housing all together,” said Keisling, noting the caring community and quality dialogue.    

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