This is a transcript of a speech given by Chay Brown, TransActual’s Director of Operations, at the 2023 TUC LGBT+ Conference. Please note that this is what Chay planned to say, and would have said had he not got side tracked!
Harassment on the street, discrimination that prevents you from getting a job, and a transphobic landlord. All things that could easily affect a UK based trans person. For those of us with secure housing, we do at least have a place of safety to retreat to. Those of experiencing housing discrimination can, in theory, seek support to challenge the discrimination that the Equality Act protects us from.
In Kenya there isn’t a law to protect trans people from discrimination, in fact trans people are impacted by the homophobic, biphobic and transphobic laws that were originally imposed under colonial rule.
It’s a difficult time to be a trans person in the UK. Over the last couple of years we’ve faced a relentless torrent of negativity in traditional media, social media and in the political arena ranging from misinformation to downright hostility. It is wearing to have one’s identity constantly denied, to be ‘othered’, mocked and portrayed as a threat to others. That’s why having allies is so important.