TLDEF works to ensure that transgender and gender non-conforming people can safely access sex-segregated facilities such as bathrooms and fitting rooms, where they are often subject to discrimination, harassment, and even arrest.
In early 2005, we achieved the first victory under the New York City Human Rights Law guaranteeing transgender people the right to use restrooms consistent with their gender identity. In 2006, we represented Helena Stone, a 70 year old transgender woman who worked for Verizon as a telephone repair worker at Grand Central Terminal. She was subjected to harassment and abuse, including three arrests, by Metropolitan Transportation Authority police officers when she used the women’s restroom at Grand Central. We reached a settlement on Helena’s behalf which required that the MTA adopt a policy allowing transgender people to use restrooms consistent with their gender identity, train its officers on transgender issues and pay damages to Helena. Helena’s case received widespread attention, and she was named one of The Advocate’s 2006 People of the Year for being a “transgender trailblazer.”
We’re currently representing Khadijah Farmer, a 28 year-old, masculine-looking lesbian who was thrown of a restaurant because a bouncer thought that she was too masculine looking to be in the women's restroom. The case highlights the ways in which issues of gender expression and sex-stereotyping connect the transgender rights movement with the larger LGBT rights movement and the women’s rights movement.
Are you looking for our ever-popular restroom access know your rights "credit" cards for New York City? If you'd like one (or need some for an event), contact us.