FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Roz Gould Keith
Executive Director, Stand with Trans
Farmington Hills, MI: This October, a Detroit-based, national organization serving transgender youth is offering the highly successful Trans Empowerment Month extravaganza of entertainment, workshops, networking, peer-support and more for transgender folks of all ages and their allies.
The theme this year is Be YOU. Aurora Higgs, an outspoken trans woman of color will deliver the keynote to kick-off the 2021 event on October 1. Higgs will focus on the importance of advocacy and how to be a changemaker. Amritha Venkataraman and Dakota Torolski (Human Rights Campaign), KidPower International (presenting in English and in Spanish), Dr. William M. Kuzon, Jr., Dr. Dan Shumer (Michigan Medicine), various college admissions representatives, spiritual leaders, poets, musical artists, and so many more will present topics critical to trans empowerment and living authentically!
Due to the global pandemic, all content will be presented virtually. Presenting sponsors currently include Springmatter, PNC Bank, and the Bastian Foundation. Beaumont Health, Dickinson Wright, Consumers Energy, Cripps and Silver Law, and PridePalace, among many others are event sponsors. October is LGBT history month and Stand with Trans will celebrate National Coming Out Day with socially distanced in-person events, International Intersex Awareness Day and National Pronoun Day throughout the month. Friday Fun Nights will include a musical showcase, poetry night and more.
“At Beaumont Health, we are committed to delivering exceptional, quality care, which includes understanding and meeting patient needs in an accepting and inclusive environment,” said Giacomo “Jack” De Chellis, senior director of research operations for Beaumont Health and founding chair of the Beaumont LGBTQ+ Employee Resource Group. “We are proud to support Stand with Trans in this important initiative.”
It is an unprecedented era for trans visibility, and this month-long event amplifies and validates the voices of the trans/nonbinary youth served by Stand with Trans. More than half of transgender youth have attempted or seriously contemplated suicide. A major cause for this alarming rate is a lack of support from family and community. LGBTQ+ kids who have at least one supportive adult in their lives are 40 percent less likely to attempt suicide than those who have no supportive adults. One person can mean the difference between life and death for an LGBTQ+ child.
Trevor Thomas, Consumers Energy, shared, “As we are focused on building and sustaining a world class, inclusive workforce through embedding DEI into everything we do, we are proud to partner with Stand with Trans and its mission to empower, support, and validate transgender youth. The theme to Be YOU supports the importance of being your authentic self and we couldn’t agree more as we work each day to make sure our coworkers bring their full selves to work each day. We know there is much more work to be done, but with the leadership of Stand with Trans we’ll move forward together.”
Stand with Trans, the only organization in Michigan whose mission is to support transgender youth, has provided a source of light in the darkness to underserved, marginalized children and their families since 2015. The Annual Trans Empowerment Workshop centers around providing resources, education, and life-saving tools to transgender/nonbinary youth and their families. The content will be geared to young gender diverse children through adults depending on the subject matter. All sessions require registration. Youth may attend at no charge. There is a fee for adults; one fee = all sessions! Register here.