Transgender youth experience high rates of violence and harassment and are often required by their school to use restrooms that are at odds with their gender. The voice of youth has been underrepresented in national conversations about bathroom policies for transgender individuals, and a new MyVoice project, led by a trans-positive resident obstetrician-gynecologist Halley Crissman, brights to light what youth really think about state and school bathroom policies.
Drawing on real-time text message responses from 240 MyVoice participants, Halley and her research team concluded that seven in 10 youth supported transgender individuals using the restroom corresponding to their gender identity. Contrary to popular media rhetoric, only a small minority expressed concern that people pretending to be transgender would harass bathroom users. Her findings offer an opportunity for policy makers to consider youth perspectives in bathroom use policies.
Halley recently presented the work at the Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine conference in Seattle, Washington. A summary of her presentation was published in the February 2018 supplementary issue of the Journal of Adolescent Health. A full manuscript, in the area of LGBTQ health, is forthcoming.