Resolution 8: Supporting Transgender Access

Resolved, That the 168th Convention of the Diocese of California submits the following resolution to the 79th General Convention of The Episcopal Church:

Resolved, the House of ____________ concurring, That the 79th General Convention of The Episcopal Church reaffirm its support for the enactment of laws at the local, state and federal level that prohibit discrimination based on gender identity or the expression of one’s gender identity; and be it further

Resolved, That The Episcopal Church support legislative, educational, pastoral, liturgical, and broader communal efforts that seek to end the pattern of violence against transgender people in general and transgender women in particular, calling attention especially to the rising violence against transgender women of color; and be it further

Resolved, That The Episcopal Church oppose all legislation that restricts public restroom, locker room and shower access for transgender and gender non-conforming people, recognizing that such bills disproportionately impact and contribute to a pattern of violence against transgender women and non-binary identified people; and be it further

Resolved, That The Episcopal Church ask dioceses and parishes to remove barriers to full participation in congregational life by making their gender-specific facilities and activities fully accessible to all, regardless of gender identity and expression.

 

Explanation:  This resolution reaffirms the support of The Episcopal Church for transgender people by calling upon the General Convention to lift its voice in response to the rise of anti-transgender rhetoric, legislation, and violence across the United States. It builds upon earlier General Convention resolutions* and public statements by the Presiding Bishop and the President of the House of Deputies decrying this pattern, including the recent legislative efforts in Texas and the declared ban on transgender people serving in the military.**

Building upon this foundation, this resolution calls us to recognize and respond to the lethal violence against transgender people that has risen sharply over the last several years, disproportionately impacting transgender women of color.*** It also challenges us to name how so-called “bathroom bills,” which have likewise increased markedly in recent years, are part of that same pattern of violence, impacting not only transgender people in general but more specifically targeting transgender women and girls in a horrific pattern of transmisogyny.**** Finally, this resolution calls upon Episcopalians to ensure that even as we direct our gaze and action outward, we also take stock of the gender-specific activities and facilities of our own congregations, making sure that they are fully accessible to people of all gender identities and expressions, binary and non-binary.

Founded on our baptismal vocation to persist in resisting evil, to strive for justice and peace among all, and to respect the dignity of every human being, this resolution urges us onward in building the beloved community.

 

Footnotes

* Previous General Convention resolutions have included 2009-C048 (“Support Employment Non-discrimination Laws”), 2009-D012 (“Support Laws that Prohibit Discrimination Based on Gender Identity”), 2012-D022 (“Respond to Bullying”), and 2015-D028 (“Oppose Conversion Therapy”).

** The Presiding Bishop’s letter opposing the declared ban on transgender people in the military is here: http://episcopaldigitalnetwork.com/ens/2017/07/28/presiding-bishop-responds-to-trumps-transgender-military-ban/ The most recent joint letter of the Presiding Bishop and the President of the House of Deputies can be found here: http://episcopaldigitalnetwork.com/ens/2017/07/20/curry-jennings-urge-texas-house-leader-to-continue-opposition-to-texas-bathroom-bill-noting-general-convention-planned-2018-meeting-in-austin/

*** For more information on the pattern of anti-transgender violence in the United States, please see the report “Unerased: Counting Trangender Lives” at https://mic.com/unerased

**** The rising numbers of so-called “bathroom bills” introduced over the last five years can be observed here http://www.ncsl.org/research/education/-bathroom-bill-legislative-tracking635951130.aspx. For up-to-date information on bills pending in 2017, please see http://www.transequality.org/action-center or http://www.freedomforallamericans.org/category/legislative-tracker/. For an overview of this legislative pattern as of January, 2017, please see the Time article “Lawmakers in 6 More States Are Pursuing ‘Bathroom Bills.’ And That’s Just the Beginning” at http://time.com/4624009/bathroom-bill-lawmakers/

 

Submitted by:  The Rev. Dr. Cameron Partridge, Rector, St. Aidan’s, San Francisco, rector@staidansf.org; Ms. Gretchen Lintner, Delegate, St. Mary the Virgin, San Francisco, gretchen.lintner@gmail.com.

Endorsed by:  Ms. Sarah Lawton, Delegate, St. John the Evangelist, SF; Mr. Warren Wong, Delegate, St. James Church, SF; The Rev. Liz Tichenor, Associate Rector, All Souls, Alameda

 

Comments

Please vote to allow this res to come to the floor. Our diocese should take the lead on this timely issue.

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