How New Mexico Became a Safe Haven for Transgender People

How New Mexico Became a Safe Haven for Transgender People

As states in the southwest region of the USA continue to pass anti-LGBTQ+ laws, New Mexico is passing laws that seek to protect and support the queer community, marking itself as a safe haven for transgender people.

According to LGBTQ Nation, over the last year, New Mexico has passed two laws that protect transgender health care practices and prevents any state government entities from aiding other states in the prosecution of those who seek gender affirming care. These strides to help safeguard people who are trans has turned New Mexico into a refuge for the community.

LGBTQ Nation spoke with the director of the Transgender Resource Center of New Mexico (TGRCNM), T. Micheal Trimm, who explained the growing popularity of the state as a hotspot for transgender communities to live and thrive. “We’re geographically situated in between states that are struggling with treating people like human beings and allowing folks to have the bodily autonomy to take care of themselves in whatever way suits them best,” said Trimm.

TGRCNM is one of the reasons why transgender people can feel safe within the state’s borders. The center offers services and assistance to queer people in need including showers, laundry machines, prepared meals, as well as providind access to legal, housing and employment assistance, healthcare like STI testing, mental health services, and food benefits.

But despite all the aid they provide, TGRCNM doesn’t feel quite prepared to assist the influx of residents flocking to the area. Co-founder of the center Adrien Lawyer told LGBTQ Nation, “This is incredibly overwhelming and has continued to stretch the limits of our capacity.”

States like Oklahoma, Texas, Arizona, and Utah, all neighboring states to New Mexico have passed laws that ban gender-affirming care for transgender youth since 2022. And nationwide, Republican legislators have been introducing similar laws all in an attempt to curtail healthcare, educational, and governmental support of transgender people. Some laws prevent gender affirming care from being practiced, or deny trans people restroom access. Other legislation, like Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” law, prevents discussions about trans and queer people in classrooms.

Though New Mexico organizations like TGRCNM in Albuquerque are struggling to meet the needs of an increasingly trans community, they are setting examples for other states to provide the same refuge.

Show your support for the trans people in New Mexico by making a donation to the Transgender Resource Center of New Mexico.

Leave a Reply

Related Post