TLDEF in the News!
TLDEF has gotten a substantial amount of positive media visibility over the last few months, including two OpEd placements in November, 2013 focusing on the Transgender Day of Remembrance. The first OpEd ran in the Syracuse Post-Standard. In that piece, TLDEF’s Executive Director Michael Silverman revisited the 2008 killing of Syracuse resident Lateisha Green and TLDEF’s quest, in partnership with her family and other groups, to achieve justice in her case. The second OpEd, in Gay City News, highlighted the August, 2013 killing of New York City resident Islan Nettles, highlighting the immense challenges facing transgender people of color, and urging New Yorkers of the need to eliminate anti-transgender violence and hatred in our society.
In December, 2013, TLDEF received prominent placement in an Associated Press story titled: “Many hurdles ahead for transgender rights movement.” TLDEF Executive Director Michael Silverman was quoted prominently at the top of the article saying:
“My sense is that we are 20 years behind the mainstream gay and lesbian movement in terms of public understanding. I see a lessening of anti-gay rhetoric as the American people get to know gays and lesbians. But fewer Americans know transgender people that way at this point, and that presents an opening that opponents of transgender rights can exploit.”
The Associated Press story was published in dozens of outlets across the country including USA Today, reaching millions of readers and raising visibility for transgender issues. It also prompted three additional media outlets to contact TLDEF, seeking comment on this topic. The Advocate Magazine featured TLDEF in an article titled: “In Their Own Words: LGBT Advocates on the State of Transgender Issues: Eight leaders in LGBT advocacy give their thoughts on what 2013 meant for transgender rights, and what 2014 might bring.” MSNBC then invited TLDEF Executive Director Michael Silverman onto the network to discuss transgender rights alongside acclaimed actress and trans advocate Laverne Cox, who stars on the popular Netflix series, “Orange is the New Black.” And the Lincoln Journal Star newspaper in Nebraska interviewed TLDEF for its article on the 20-year remembrance of the murder of Brandon Teena, whose story was the basis for the 1999 Academy Award winning film, “Boys Don’t Cry.”
TLDEF began 2014 with coverage of our Name Change Project’s expansion into the Pittsburgh area. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette published a front page feature story on our initiative on New Year’s Day, titled, “Legal project helps transgender people get a name change.”
Also in 2014, the Advocate Magazine and Huffington Post published TLDEF’s reaction to the landmark Maine Supreme Court ruling, which said that denying a transgender girl access to the girls’ bathroom at school is a violation of her rights under Maine’s Human Rights Act. Finally, just last week, the Advocate Magazine published a story on TLDEF’s recent victories on behalf of two transgender women in North Carolina who had been denied the right to change their names.
We’re excited about all of our recent press exposure and look forward to even more favorable media attention in the coming months.