Transgender Law Center

Oakland, CA   |  TransgenderLawCenter.org

Mission

Transgender Law Center changes law, policy, and attitudes so that all people can live safely, authentically, and free from discrimination regardless of their gender identity or expression. TLC is the largest national trans-led organization advocating self-determination for all people. Grounded in legal expertise and committed to racial justice, TLC employs a variety of community-driven strategies to keep transgender and gender nonconforming people alive, thriving, and fighting for liberation.

Ruling year info

2005

Executive Director

Kris Hayashi

Main address

PO Box 70976

Oakland, CA 94612-0976 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

05-0544006

NTEE code info

Civil Rights, Advocacy for Specific Groups (R20)

Public Interest Law/Litigation (I83)

Alliance/Advocacy Organizations (P01)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Transgender people experience disproportionate violence, discrimination, and poverty. Trans people are three times more likely to have an annual income of less than $10,000, and more than twice as likely to live in poverty. Transgender people of color experience four times the general unemployment rate (U.S. Transgender Survey 2015). Trans youth overwhelmingly experience discrimination at school, with 35% attempting suicide (CDC 2017). Given high levels of poverty, employment discrimination, and homelessness, trans people are much more likely to rely on street economies for survival, increasing likelihood of imprisonment, where violence and discrimination are severe. Trans immigrants—most fleeing violence in their countries of origin—often face challenges in securing legal status, highly vulnerable to criminalization and abuse under immigration enforcement. Many end up in detention, facing devastating violence and struggling to access legal representation (Human Rights Watch 2016).

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

[email protected]

[email protected], formed in 2014, is a national collaboration based in Atlanta, GA. The collaboration joins the Transgender Law Center’s long history of legal, policy and trans-specific expertise with Southerners on New Ground (SONG)’s well-respected Southern base-building and organizing shop. [email protected] focuses on policy advocacy, legal work, public education, and movement-building.

In 2017, [email protected] conducted a tour of the South called the Jewel Box Revue along with a survey investigating the experiences and priorities of trans and gender nonconforming Southerners. The resulting Grapevine Report, released in early 2019, paints a stark picture of the challenges facing TGNC folks in the South, as well as the creativity, generosity, and resilience sustaining Southern trans communities (TransgenderLawCenter.org/Grapevine)

Population(s) Served
LGBTQ people
Transgender people

TRUTH, a collaboration between Transgender Law Center and GSA Network, is a national trans and gender nonconforming youth leadership and storytelling program that aims to build empathy, understanding, and a movement for youth to share their stories in their own words and in their own way (OurTransTruth.org)

Population(s) Served
LGBTQ people
Transgender people
Students

Created by TLC Senior Director Cecilia Chung, Positively Trans (T+) is a constituent-led project grounded in the principle that we are all capable of forming our own networks, telling our own stories, and developing our own advocacy strategies in response to inequities, stigma, and discrimination. With the support of the Elton John AIDS Foundation, TLC launched Positively Trans as a response to the structural inequalities that drive high rates of HIV/AIDS and poor health outcomes. By partnering with a National Advisory Board of community leaders, Positively Trans seeks to mobilize and promote the resilience of trans people most impacted by or living with HIV/AIDS, particularly trans women of color, through research, policy advocacy, legal advocacy, and leadership development.

Population(s) Served
LGBTQ people
Transgender people
People with HIV/AIDS

Transgender Law Center’s Detention Project works to end the abuses transgender and gender nonconforming (TGNC) people experience in prisons, jails, immigration detention, state hospitals, and other forms of detention, and at the hands of law enforcement.

Population(s) Served
LGBTQ people
Transgender people
Incarcerated people
Immigrants and migrants

Transgender Law Center and Trans Justice Funding Project joined together to build infrastructure and invest in the leadership of transgender and gender nonconforming (TGNC) people on the ground. With trainings held in the Southeast, Midwest, Pacific Northwest, and Southwest, our National Training Institute (NTI) has built up a cohort of over 100 trans leaders across the country.

In February 2016, the first National Training Institute kicked off with a cohort of TGNC leaders from 11 states facing anti-trans legislation. In partnership with the ACLU, GSA Network, and other organizations, TLC and TJFP have grown that cohort considerably, with two more trainings held in 2016 and several more in 2017. We are continuing the work of these trainings through monthly calls with state leaders and are working to build a national movement of TGNC leaders ready to take on immediate attacks and fight for a long-term vision of liberation for all of our communities.

The National Training Institute builds on TLC’s history of training and developing TGNC leaders—from the Transgender Leadership Summit held for several years in California, to the first-of-its-kind National Trans Anti-Violence Convening in 2015 in Chicago, which brought together over 100 trans leaders from across the country.

Population(s) Served
LGBTQ people
Transgender people

Launched by 2018 Soros Equality Fellow Raquel Willis, Black Trans Circles (BTC) develops the leadership of Black trans women in the South and Midwest through the creation of healing justice spaces to work through oppression-based trauma and incubate community organizing efforts to address anti-trans murder and violence. BTC is unique in that it focuses on strengthening the relationships, skills, and power of Black trans women living in areas with high rates of anti-trans murder and violence. BTC utilizes pre-existing networks on the local level to combat isolation and powerlessness. BTC was founded by Raquel Willis through a 2018 Open Societies Foundation Soros Equality Fellowship.

Population(s) Served
LGBTQ people
Transgender people
People of African descent

Launched by 2019 Soros Justice Fellow Sebastian Margaret, the Disability Project magnifies the leadership, collective power, and visibility of LGBTQ disabled/Deaf/ill constituents. Led by a multi-racial, cross-class, cross-disability advisory board of transgender and gender nonconforming people, the Disability Project embeds disability, Deafness, and anti-ableism politics and expertise into LGBTQ movement work. The Project breaks isolation, grows connection, and builds leadership within trans disability/Deaf/chronically ill communities.

Population(s) Served
People with disabilities
LGBTQ people
Transgender people

For almost two decades, Transgender Law Center has led the country in challenging the legal system to respect the dignity and humanity of transgender and gender nonconforming people. Our impact litigation in areas of employment, education, immigration, and more have redefined transgender people’s experience of rights and justice in the U.S. We believe in justice and liberation for all trans people, and that means change that starts with the people most impacted by the systems we fight—including trans people in prison, Black and brown trans migrants, Black trans women, trans people living with HIV, and trans youth.

Population(s) Served
Transgender people
Transgender people
Transgender people

Our Legal Services Project produces guides and resources connecting countless people to the relief and rights they need, and operates TLC’s Legal Help Desk, which has supported thousands of people battling injustice over the last decade. The Legal Services Project (LSP) harnesses community power to meet community needs. We believe that trans and gender nonconforming people, when connected to the knowledge and resources we need, hold the power to protect ourselves, each other, and our community as a whole. LSP relies on two robust volunteer programs, our Community Resistance Network and our Legal Resistance Network, to respond to the requests that come through TLC’s Legal Help Desk. We also develop and maintain resources, including a calendar of legal clinics throughout the country, to ensure members of our community have the knowledge needed to advocate for themselves.

Population(s) Served
LGBTQ people
LGBTQ people
LGBTQ people
LGBTQ people
LGBTQ people
Transgender people

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Responses to requests received through our legal help desk and prison mail program

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Transgender people, Incarcerated people

Related Program

Legal Services Project

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Impact cases litigated

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Transgender people

Related Program

Impact Litigation

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Amicus briefs filed

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Transgender people

Related Program

Impact Litigation

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Volunteers mobilized by our Legal Services Project, including attorneys and other legal professionals

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Transgender people

Related Program

Legal Services Project

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Website visitors provided with legal resources: TLC-produced guides for navigating employment issues, identity documents, healthcare, housing, immigration, criminal law systems, and more

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Transgender people

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Transgender activists and allies in LGBTQIA+ movements engaged and trained and/or resourced through TLC programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Transgender people, Activists

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

States and territories represented by TLC leadership trainees and movement partners

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Transgender people, Activists

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Partnerships active with fellow movement and cross-movement groups

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Transgender people, Activists

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of people who attended/viewed our virtual community gatherings, 10-week series beginning at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic (March 2020)

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Activists, Transgender people

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of organizations/partners who signed on to our 2020 Defund the Police statement

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Transgender people, Activists

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of organizations represented at our inaugural Defund the Police training presented in partnership with M4BL, SONG, and Freedom Inc.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

LGBTQ people, Transgender people, Activists

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

In response to violence and discrimination that contribute to disproportionate poverty, homelessness, lack of access to healthcare, and other barriers for transgender and gender nonconforming people (TGNC), Transgender Law Center (TLC) works to:

INCREASE social acceptance and support for TGNC people and policies through public education, leadership development, and coalition building: We do this through a diverse range of programs that develop leadership and organizing skills, link trans activists and organizations, tell authentic stories, and shift public opinion, elevating the voices and experiences of TGNC people within other progressive movements.

SECURE and defend comprehensive legal protections for TGNC people: TLC’s legal and public policy efforts leverage impact litigation and legal advocacy, administrative advocacy, and mobilization to make meaningful change.

BUILD capacity for TGNC people to have increased access to legal and support services: Our Legal Services Project responds to the urgent need for accurate legal information, through a national helpline and separate immigration triage system; recruitment and training of attorneys; know-your-rights publications and resources; and community workshops and legal clinics.

IMPACT LITIGATION AND ADVOCACY: We litigate impact cases addressing employment, education, public accommodations, prisons, and more, to strengthen precedents that affirm TGNC recognition and equality. Our Detention Project specifically focuses on trans people in prison and immigration detention. We also engage in advocacy at local, state, and national levels, pioneering strategies where the policy environment is ripe for change, and sharing lessons learned to enable replication.

LEGAL SERVICES PROJECT: TLC supports attorneys in effectively representing TGNC people, maintains a legal helpline in English and in Spanish, and organizes legal clinics. Our helpline responds to urgent community needs and keeps TLC’s legal department in touch with frontline issues faced by TGNC people across the country. We provide a national calendar of legal clinics on our web site, and develop and disseminate critical know-your-rights materials.

NATIONAL TRAINING INSTITUTE: Through NTI’s adaptable curricula, TLC builds the skills of local activists with a particular emphasis on those in the Southeast, Midwest, and Southwest. NTI directly challenges the isolation in which many of these activists work by connecting them to a growing national network of peers.

[email protected]: [email protected] brings together TLC’s long history of legal, policy and trans-specific expertise with the Southern base-building and organizing of Southerners on New Ground (SONG), focusing on policy advocacy, legal work, public education, and movement-building in the region.

POSITIVELY TRANS (T+) : This program amplifies the of trans people affected by HIV; identifies systems gaps affecting trans communities, and develops a response plan to establish protective laws; and challenges social exclusion, stigma, economic marginalization, and unmet healthcare needs. Positively Trans has published a groundbreaking national needs assessment of trans people living with HIV; provided digital storytelling training to dozens of activists; and is building a growing network of HIV+ trans activists across the country, with an emphasis on trans women of color.

IMMIGRATION: TLC partners with local and national immigrant-rights groups, advances a litigation strategy to end trans detention, and builds a body of case law addressing the specific needs of TGNC immigrants. We also engage in strategic convenings, provide legal services, and develop publications addressing TGNC immigrant issues and needs.

THE TRUTH PROGRAM: A collaboration with GSA Network, TRUTH aims to build empathy, understanding, and a movement for TGNC youth to share their stories in their own words and in their own way, and to advocate for their rights. TRUTH supports a national youth council of 30 members with training, technical assistance, and social media campaigning; these young people then support, train, and mobilize their peers.

TLC has a 19-year track record of successful community-rooted work and legal strategies. By developing the knowledge, skills, and relationships that help us rise to meet diverse movement needs, we have been able to more effectively leverage legal and advocacy work in conjunction with movement-building, organizing, and leadership development strategies. Current TLC leadership includes Cecilia Chung, a nationally-recognized advocate for human rights, health equity, and LGBT equality; Kris Hayashi, with a 20-year legacy of leadership and organizing as a public trans person of color; and other movement leaders: transgenderlawcenter.org/about/staff-and-board

In its first 19 years, Transgender Law Center has grown from a fiscally-sponsored project to a significant, independent, national organization. TLC's advocacy and precedent-setting litigation victories—in areas of employment, prison conditions, education, immigration, healthcare, and more—have served to protect and advance the rights and opportunities of TGNC people across the country, as TLC also equips thousands of individual community members annually, building toward a long-term, national, trans-led movement for justice.

TLC has filled a significant gap in organizing training and leadership development to support movement-building and collective strategy. Early Transgender Leadership Summits in California and the 2015 national gathering of more than 100 trans leaders (mostly trans people of color) addressing issues of violence, supported the development of TLC's current National Training Institute, which has supported and developed hundreds of activists and leaders across the country. TLC's Positively Trans (T+) program has organized and collaborated in significant trainings that equip trans people—and especially trans women of color—to play a stronger role in local, national, and international efforts to address HIV and reduce disparate impact. TLC's collaborative TRUTH program with GSA Network is intentionally building community, support, and leadership for trans youth through national and regional programming.

TLC has become an increasingly strong partner in the struggle for immigrants rights, lifting up the voices and experiences of transgender immigrants while developing and successfully deploying novel legal strategies, including approaches that have set a precedent for all migrant survivors of trafficking. TLC has placed specific focus on documenting abuses in immigration detention and in prison, advocating for improved policies and conditions, and an end to detention for transgender immigrants, given the overwhelming abuses they face in detention.

When it was clear that no one was collecting data to make a case for change to policymakers and the public, TLC partnered with researchers to gather quality data that could be compared to broad national data sets—creating groundbreaking data on experiences of trans people in California, trans people across the country affected by HIV/AIDS, and trans people in the South. We have also undertaken groundbreaking messaging research to understand how best to strengthen public understanding and empathy for trans people, especially with regard to healthcare access.

Financials

Transgender Law Center
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
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Transgender Law Center

Board of directors
as of 6/14/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Chinyere Ezie

Brielle Darynn

Mat dos Santos

Evelyn Rios Stafford

Theresa Witherspoon

Alan Francisco-Tipgos

Chinyere Ezie

Morgan Darby

Trystan Reese

Louis Porter II

cori schmanke parrish

Sunu Chandy

Ana Connor

Ebony Harper

Imara Jones

Min Matson

Myles Paisley

Beckham Rivera

Alic Shook

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 06/14/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Asian American/Pacific Islanders/Asian
Gender identity
Male, Transgender
Sexual orientation
Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, or other sexual orientations in the LGBTQIA+ community
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data