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VIDEO: Under Siege, Trans Youth Describe What It Means To Be a Friend to the LGBTQ Community

Anxiety. Fear. Loneliness. Feelings that too many transgender youth are experiencing across the country in the Trump era.

During the 2016 election, Donald Trump claimed to be a friend to the LGBTQ community. But in his short time in office, President Trump’s harmful policies have taken direct aim at transgender students — who already face significantly higher rates of discrimination, bullying and violence.

Earlier this year, under the direction of Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Secretary Betsy DeVos, the U.S. Departments of Justice and Education revoked the Obama administration’s guidance detailing school protections for transgender students under Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972.

“Donald Trump’s claim that he is a friend to the LGBTQ community was just one more ‘alternative fact’ in a long list of falsehoods,” said Sarah McBride, HRC National Press Secretary. “These transgender kids know what it means to be a friend – a friend accepts them, cares for them, and protects them from bullies. From rescinding lifesaving guidance protecting transgender students to appointing anti-transgender officials and judges, Donald Trump has proven time and time again that he is no friend to our community. Quite the opposite.”

Trump’s actions have emboldened state legislatures across the country to enact discriminatory laws attacking transgender youth. Despite the national outcry following North Carolina’s adoption of the infamous HB2, legislation that codified discrimination against transgender people including in public schools, several states, including Texas, are currently considering similar discriminatory bills.

These bills have a created an atmosphere in which discrimination isn’t only condoned, but encouraged against this vulnerable group. In fact, 75 percent of transgender students reported feeling unsafe in school and tragically, more than 50 percent of transgender youth report attempting suicide at least once in their lifetime.

Now is the time for every single person to stand up for transgender kids under attack by the Trump administration. Trans youth must know that they are not alone and we are with them in this fight. They matter and they are loved — just the way they are.

Check out HRC’s latest video on how Trump is no friend to the LGBTQ community.