firstly I am happy to see we finally have a voice, so thankyou for this opportunity Mr Commissioner
as a m2f with some inter-sexual characteristics I am no stranger to the blatant and legislative forms of discrimination and also the underlying forms of passive discrimination that exist in the wider community. I have jumped through many gov endorsed hoops in order to even be allowed to transition which is all good and fine however now that I am officially labeled and categorized how do I pay for it? It’s not all bad, being lucky enough to have been born in NSW has made my journey slightly less painful. I still haven't been able to have the full surgery and had to be satisfied with an orchidectomy to atleast enable me to stop taking harmful drugs like Androcur which almost drove me to self harm.
I must admit in those early days i visited the notion of suicide on many occasions and was hospitalised more then once. I worked as a sex worker to get myself through TAFE and break out of the DSP cycle. I must admit things have improved since some TG legislative reform in 1996 however for the most part some governmental and private sectors continue to deal with our community with a range of total confusion to outright discrimination and total mismanagement. I have a good job now and many prospects however the opportunities were few and far between and I consider myself quite lucky to have some education, survival skills and support networks through friends and family.
I am saddened that GRS is still considered Cosmetic. I am saddened that more attention isn't being played to the plight of transgender children. I am saddened that some of these things cant be changed over night. I am happy someone’s seems listening. I hope something good comes from this.
I became aware of a situation where an inner city NGO was aloud to discriminate against TG woman on the basis of the current state of their genitals (post op / pre op). The people that were turned aware from this woman’s safe place/drop in centre (which was m2f previously friendly) were for the most part people who have been living as females for years but lacked the capacity to advocate for themselves resulting in myself and other interested parties to pursue a pro bono case through PIAC to partition the Attorney Generals office to block this NGO’s (who’s name I wont mention but starts with Mission Australia) application to be exempt from discriminating against transgender females 3 years ago. The exemption stands to this day. I hear it’s up for renewal in October. Some low income and homeless TG people rely on these very few inner city services that except them. As a (transsexual) homeless outreach worker I feel a need to advocate for the battlers in our community.
Homelessness outrewach Worker