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    New Estimates Show that 150,000 Youth Ages 13 to 17 Identify as Transgender in the US

    Jody L. Herman, Andrew R. Flores, Taylor N. T. Brown, Bianca D.M. Wilson, and Kerith J. Conron, January 2017

    An estimated 0.7 percent of youth ages 13 to 17, or 150,000 youth, identify as transgender in the United States, according to a new study released by The Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law. This study is the first to provide population estimates for youth who identify as transgender in each of the 50 states, plus the District of Columbia.

    The study provides new estimates of the age composition of individuals who identify as transgender in the U.S. and estimates of the size of the transgender-identified population by age group. The youngest age group, 13 to 17, has the highest estimated percentage of individuals who identify as transgender.

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    If Passed, Virginia House Bill 1612 Would Negatively Impact 34,500 Transgender Adults and Thousands of Transgender Youth

    On January 11, a Virginia lawmaker offered House Bill 1612 (HB 1612), which would require transgender people to use bathrooms in public schools, government buildings, and public universities based on “sex,” as determined by one’s “original birth certificate.” Additionally, the bill would require schools to inform parents or guardians within 24 hours if their child seeks “to be recognized or treated as the opposite sex, to use a name or pronouns inconsistent with the child’s sex, or to use a restroom or changing facility designated for the opposite sex.”

    HB 1612 would negatively impact over 34,000 transgender adults in Virginia. Virginia ranks 24th in the United States in terms of adults who identify as transgender (0.55 percent) and over 40 percent of transgender adults in Virginia are People of Color, including 25 percent who identify as non-Hispanic Black or African-American and 10 percent who identify as Hispanic or Latino.

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    If Passed, Texas Senate Bill 6 Would Negatively Impact Over 125,000 Transgender Adults in Texas and Thousands of Transgender Youth

    Senate Bill 6 (SB 6) would require transgender people to use bathrooms in public schools, government buildings, and public universities based on “biological sex” and would pre-empt local nondiscrimination ordinances that allow transgender Texans to use the bathroom that corresponds with their gender identity. SB 6 would contribute to a discriminatory environment for LGBT people, and have a direct impact on 125,000 transgender adults and thousands of transgender youth in the state. In addition, SB 6 would conflict with federal laws, the laws of other states, and the policies of most large companies. As a result, Texas risks significant economic impacts.

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    Public Opinion on Transgender Rights: A Twenty-Three Country Survey

    Andrew R. Flores, Taylor N.T. Brown, and Andrew S. Park, December 2017

    Transgender rights have emerged as a central feature in the discourse on LGBT rights in many countries; however, little is known about public support for such rights around the globe. This report presents findings from a ground-breaking survey of 17,105 adults across 23 countries about their attitudes towards transgender people and rights.

    This study provides evidence of high levels of support for transgender rights, as well as instances of strong opposition.

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    Scholars File Amici Brief On Constitutionality of Mississippi Statute

    On December 22, 2016, 82 scholars who study the LGBT population–many of whom are affiliated with the Williams Institute–filed an amici curiae brief with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in Barber v. Bryant and Campaign for Southern Equality v. Bryant. These appeals concern the constitutionality of Mississippi’s House Bill 1523, which elevates three anti-LGBT religious beliefs …

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    The Williams Institute Launches All Survivors Project

    The Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law announces the launch of the All Survivors Project, documenting sexual and gender based violence against boys and men in situations of armed conflict and displacement. The project, supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and the United Nations High Commissioner of Refugees (UNHCR), will provide best practices and policy recommendations to improve the global response for all victims.

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    World AIDS Day Report – HIV Criminalization in California: Evaluation of Transmission Risk

    Amira Hasenbush and Dr. Brian Zanoni, December 2016

    In California, outdated HIV criminalization laws do not reflect the highly effective medical advances for reducing the risk of HIV transmission and extending the quantity and quality of life for people living with HIV.

    HIV criminalization is a term used to describe laws that either criminalize otherwise legal conduct or that increase the penalties for illegal conduct based upon a person’s HIV-positive status. California has four HIV-specific criminal laws.

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    Research Finds Sexual Victimization Perpetrated by Women More Common than Previously Known

    Lara Stemple, Andrew Flores, and Ilan H. Meyer, November 2016

    Using U.S. federal agency data, researchers find that female sexual perpetration is more common than previously recognized. The researchers’ findings contradict the common belief that female sexual perpetration is rare.

    Sexual victimization by women perpetrators occurs mostly against men and occasionally against women.

    The research, published in a paper titled “Sexual Victimization Perpetrated by Women: Federal Data Reveal Surprising Prevalence” was written by Lara Stemple, Director of the UCLA Law School’s Health and Human Rights Law Project, and Williams Institute researchers Andrew Flores and Ilan Meyer and was recently published in Aggression and Violent Behavior.

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    Surveying LGBTQ Youth in Foster Care: Lessons from Los Angeles 

    Bianca D.M. Wilson, Khush Cooper, Angel Kastanis, and Soon Kyu Choi, November 2016

    This report describes the methodology used in a 2014 Williams Institute study on sexual and gender minority youth in the Los Angeles County foster care system . The 2014 study surveyed youth in foster care about their sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, other demographic characteristics, and experiences in foster care. In this methods report about the 2014 study, researchers describe the study design and process, share their survey instrument and recommended questions, and review lessons learned from their experience.

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    Adults Who Identify as Transgender are More Racially and Ethnically Diverse than the U.S. General Population

    Andrew R. Flores, Taylor N. T. Brown, and Jody L. Herman October 2016

    Adults who identify as transgender are more racially and ethnically diverse than the U.S. population overall, according to a new study released by The Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law. This study is the first to provide estimates of the racial and ethnic make-up of adults who identify as transgender in each of the 50 states, plus the District of Columbia.

    Researchers estimate that adults who identify as transgender are less likely to be white and more likely to be racial and ethnic minorities when compared to the U.S. general population. Adults who identify as African-American or black, Latino or Hispanic, and adults of another race or ethnicity are more likely than white adults to identify as transgender.

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    Founding Executive Director Brad Sears Transitions to New Role at the Williams Institute

    After 15 years, Brad Sears Steps Down as Executive Director LOS ANGELES – Brad Sears, the founding Executive Director and Roberta A. Conroy Scholar of Law and Policy, will be transitioning to a different role at the Williams Institute and UCLA School of Law.  Mr. Sears will continue his vital law and policy work at the …

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    For Immigrants, HIV Criminalization Can Mean Incarceration and Deportation

    Amira Hasenbush, Bianca D.M. Wilson, October 2016

    In the new report HIV Criminalization Against Immigrants in California, Williams Institute Scholars Amira Hasenbush and Bianca D.M. Wilson, use California Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI) data to explore how HIV criminal laws in California are enforced against foreign born populations.

    Key Findings include: 15 percent of people in California who have come into contact with the criminal justice system for HIV crimes are foreign born and 83 percent of those foreign born were from Mexico, Central or South America, or the Caribbean.

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    Strict Voter ID Laws May Disenfranchise More Than 34,000 Transgender Voters in the 2016 November Election

    Jody L. Herman, September 2016

    Eight states’ voter ID laws may create substantial barriers to voting and possible disenfranchisement for tens of thousands of transgender voters this election. In Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wisconsin, about 112,000 transgender people who have transitioned are estimated to be eligible to vote—34,000 of them may face barriers to voting this November due to strict ID laws.

    According to a new study entitled, The Potential Impact of Voter Identification Laws on Transgender Voters in the 2016 General Election authored by Williams Institute Scholar Jody L. Herman, Ph.D., many transgender people who have transitioned do not have identification that accurately reflects their correct gender.

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    The Impact Of A $15 Minimum Wage Among Same Sex Couples

    M.V. Lee Badgett, Alyssa Schneebaum, September 2016

    Increases in the minimum wage are being proposed, debated, and passed across the United States. In 2016, New York State and California significantly increased their state minimum wage, and the new rate will reach $15 per hour in 2022 in California, $15 per hour in 2018 in New York City, and $12.50 an hour in New York State in 2020.1 Research in 2014 suggested that increases in the minimum wage could reduce poverty, including poverty among lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. This research brief predicts that raising the federal minimum wage from its current level of $7.25 to $15 an hour would reduce LGBT poverty by one-third for male same-sex couples and by almost one-half for female same-sex couples. Almost 30,000 people in same-sex couples would see their incomes rise above the federal poverty level.

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    Model Legislation for Eliminating the Gay and Trans Panic Defenses

    By Jordan Blair Woods, Brad Sears, Christy Mallory
    September 2016

    “Gay panic” and “transgender panic” defenses have been asserted by defendants in criminal trials throughout the U.S. since the 1960s. In these cases, defendants have argued that their violent behavior was a rational response to discovering that the victim was LGBT. The defenses are rooted in irrational fears based on homophobia and transphobia, and send the message that violence against LGBT people is understandable and acceptable. When successful, these defenses have resulted in murder charges being reduced to manslaughter or another lesser offense.

    To date, only one state, California, has banned defendants from asserting gay or transgender panic defense by statute. In this brief, Williams Institute scholars present model language, based on the language adopted in California, that other states may use to eliminate use of the defenses through legislation. The model legislation offers language to prohibit defendants from using gay and trans panic defenses under each of the major defenses theories of provocation, insanity/diminished capacity, and self-defense. In addition, the brief provides an overview of the ways in which the defenses have been asserted in trials throughout the last several decades, and evaluates potential constitutional challenges to state legislation eliminating use of the defenses.

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    Interactive: LGBT and Same-sex Couple Demographics

    Click here for the full interactive graphic of LGBT statistics in the US.

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    LGBT Aging: A Review of Research Findings, Needs, and Policy Implications

    By Soon Kyu Choi, Ilan H. Meyer
    August 2016

    In LGBT Aging: A Review of Research Findings, Needs, and Policy Implications, Soon Kyu Choi and Ilan H. Meyer, Ph.D. provide a review of what is known about lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) older adults.

    “It is estimated that 2.4 million LGBT older adults over 50 live in the United States,” Ilan H Meyer, Ph.D., Williams Distinguished Senior Scholar of Public Policy, says. “That number is expected to double by 2030. The needs of older LGBT adults are quite different than those of the non-LGBT population. LGBT older adults are sometimes apprehensive of how they’ll be treated by healthcare providers or in senior care facilities. We need to ensure that LGBT seniors will receive sensitive and effective care wherever they go for care.”

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    Dr. Kerith Conron Named New Blachford-Cooper Distinguished Scholar and Research Director at The Williams Institute

    LOS ANGELES —Through an extensive nationwide search, Dr. Kerith Conron has been named the Williams Institute’s new Blachford-Cooper Distinguished Scholar and Research Director. As the Blachford-Cooper Research Director, she will oversee new and ongoing research projects informing an array of issues affecting the LGBT community.   The Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law has been an influential …

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    How ID Laws Disenfranchise Transgender Voters

    CityLab
    April 1, 2016

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    For trans Americans, changing your name can still be a matter of life or death

    Quartz
    March 31, 2016

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