Yesterday, the New York Times reported that the Trump administration is considering adopting a federal standard which would exclude transgender and intersex people from the protections of many anti-discrimination laws and policies. There is a significant overlap between the autistic and transgender communities – and since autistic people first began organizing, many of our strongest leaders have been trans and intersex. An attack on trans people’s rights is an attack on the autistic community. We strongly condemn this bigoted attack, and we will fight this attempt to enshrine transphobia in our nation’s regulations and laws.
The trans and autistic communities are connected by our shared struggle for self-determination—our fundamental belief that it is every person’s right to decide how they will live their own life. Trans people deserve to live safely and free from discrimination in their communities, and to be truly included in school, in the workplace, and in public spaces. Recent, hard-won federal protections have begun to move us closer to that world. Now the Trump administration once again wants to turn back the clock, giving legal cover to bigotry and exclusion. Autistic people and the broader disability community have fought for inclusion for decades – we know how vital it is for everyone to be welcomed in their communities. This is a part of that fight, and we will not back down.
Throughout our history, ASAN has been proud to partner with LGBT advocates & organizations. ASAN worked closely with the National Center for Transgender Equality and the National LGBTQ Taskforce on a joint statement affirming the rights of autistic trans people, and the partnership of the LGBT community was instrumental in our fight against the Murphy bill, which would have stripped away key civil rights protections from many autistic people. Our communities are interconnected, and our rights are too. We are proud of our trans community members, and proud to be part of a broad coalition of civil rights organizations uniting to defeat this and any other attack on our civil and human rights.