Sometime in the last two months, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) removed a half-dozen resource documents from its website that were aimed at helping emergency homeless shelters and other housing providers comply with HUD nondiscrimination rules and keep transgender people safe. These resources were published in 2016 based on consultation with numerous service providers and advocates around the country.
“This action is foolish and shameful,” said NCTE Director of Policy Harper Jean Tobin. “Federal law prohibits discrimination against transgender people. HUD invested in creating these resources to help their grantees serve an especially vulnerable population and comply with the law. Taking them away does a disservice to hard-working local agencies and to Americans struggling with homelessness. And for what? To make a political point that the Administration dislikes transgender people? We call on Secretary Carson and HUD leadership to immediately re-publish these invaluable resources in a prominent and easy-to-find location on the agency’s website.”
This follows the withdrawal by HUD on March 10 of two previous LGBT-related policy announcements: one would have required HUD-funded shelters to put up a poster about residents’ nondiscrimination rights, and another announced the evaluation phase of long-running initiative to prevent LGBTQ youth homelessness.
An estimated 40% of homeless youth are LGBTQ. According to the 2015 US Transgender Survey, nearly one-third (30%) of transgender Americans have experienced homelessness at some point in their lives, with one in eight (12%) saying they experienced homelessness in the past year because of being transgender.
As a countermeasure against HUD’s incomprehensible purge, these resources will be permanently accessible on NCTE’s website: