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Working together with the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force (NGLTF) and the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) have produced a follow-up to  Injustice at Every Turn called A Look at Latino/a Respondents in the National Transgender Discrimination Survey (also in Spanish).

Earlier this year NGLTF and NCTE had joined with the National Black Justice Coalition to produce A Look at Black Respondents to the National Transgender Discrimination Survey.

The present report is based on the experiences of the 402 respondents who described themselves as Latino/a only or Latino/a and multiracial, this out of the 6450 transgender respondents total.  332 of the Latin respondents identified themselves as US citizens and 56 as non-citizens.  The sample size is getting too small for accurate analysis but the fact that undocumented immigrants face higher rates of discrimination in general should also extend to Latino/as in particular.

When this report uses the phrase, “due to bias,” it refers to questions on the survey that asked specifically about respondents’ experiences of anti-transgender discrimination.  Due to the robust participation of Latino/a respondents, the study also demonstrates the complex interactions of anti-transgender discrimination with racism, classism, and bias against Latino immigrants.

Key findings:

1.  The combination of anti-transgender bias and on-going institutional and individual racism is especially devastating for Latino/a transgender people and other people of color.

2.  Non-citizens respondents were the most vulnerable to harassment, abuse and violence.

3.  Latino/a transpeople often live in extreme poverty:  28% reported a household income of less than $10,000 per year.  This is nearly double the rate of transgender people as a whole (15%) and 5 times the rate for all Latino/a people in the US (5%).  The rate for the general US population is 4%.  Non-citizen respondents reported a rate of 43%.

4.  One in twelve Latino/a respondents (8.44%) were HIV-positive.  An additional 10.23% did not know their status.  The HIV+ rate of all transpeople is 2.64%, for the general Latino/a population is 0.50% and for the general US population is 0.60%.  The rate for non-citizen respondents was 23.08%.

5.  47% of Latino/a respondents reported having attempted suicide, compared to 41% of all transpeople and 1.6% of the general population.

6.  77% of respondents who had attended school as a transperson had been harassed in K-12, while 36% had been physically assaulted and 13% sexually assaulted.  Harassment was so severe that 21% left school.  9% were expelled.

7.  Respondents who were harassed and abused by teachers in K-12 show dramatically worse health and material well-being than those who were not.  Peer harassment and abuse did similar damage.

8.  The unemployment rate was 20% for Latino/a respondents, compared with 14% for the overall sample and the 7.0% US rate at the time of the survey.  26% of Latino/a respondents had lost a job due to bias and 47% were not hired due to bias.  The rate of job loss for non-citizens was 42%.

9.  54% of Latino/a transpeople are harassed, 16% physically assaulted and 14% sexually assaulted at work.  For non-citizens those percentages are, respectively, 57%, 47% and 38%.

10. Unsurprisingly, given the data above, 34% of Latino/a transpeople reported being compelled to sell drugs or do sex work for income at some point in their lives.

11.  29% of Latino/a transpeople reported having been refused a home or apartment and 15% reported having been evicted due to bias.  For non-citizens the numbers were 46% and 26%.

12.  27% of the sample had experienced homelessness at some point of their lives, which is 4 times the rate of the general US population.

13.  Only 15% of Latino/a transpeople own their home, compared to 32% of transpeople in general and 67% of the general US population (pre-mortgage collapse figures).  Minority home ownership as reported by HUD was 49.7% at the time of the survey.

14.  23% of our sample reported having been denied medical care due to bias.  36% reported having postponed medical care due to fear of encountering discrimination.

Devastating, but not unexpected data.

Originally posted to TransAction on Sat Dec 10, 2011 at 08:13 AM PST.

Also republished by Community Spotlight.

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