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Trans manifesto aims to end discrimination

I HAD the pleasure and privilege to attend the Long Gallery at Stormont last week for the launch of Focus, the Identity Trust's trans manifesto.

So many of us are totally unaware of the issues and problems affecting trans individuals and it is sometimes – quite wrongly – treated as taboo.

We met trans individuals, who relayed just how difficult it can be to gain the respect and dignity that all human beings deserve.

Frequently, trans individuals are mistakenly thought of simply as people who wear the clothing of the perceived opposite sex. But being trans is so much more than mere clothes.

How difficult must it be for a young person to come to the realisation that they are, in fact, in the "wrong" body? How difficult must it be for that young person to tell his or her parents, to go to his, or her, doctor for advice and support? And how difficult to start living their lives as who they really are?

The trans manifesto simply asks for dignity and respect and to be regarded as equal citizens with equal rights. It calls for trans individuals to be authorities on all aspects of their own lives and encourages diverse, representative, realistic and positive portrayals of what it is to be trans.

Wouldn't it be great to end all discrimination and to assume an adult stance in becoming accepting of all individuals as part of our community and our world?

CLLR NOELLE ROBINSON (Green Party)

North Down Borough Council

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