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Sheriff's deputies in Clewiston are investigating the slaying of a transgender woman whose body was found in her burning car.

When Elizabeth Coffey-Williams first came out to her family as transgender in the late 1960s, the language of gender identity wasn't what it is today.

"A lot of the words that they have today, like transgender and non-binary, they didn't have them," Elizabeth, who was in her early 20s at the time, told her niece Jennifer Coffey in a recent StoryCorps interview.

Appeals Court To Hear Transgender Inmate Case

May 17, 2019

A federal appeals court will hear arguments in August in a legal battle about the Florida Department of Corrections’ handling of a transgender inmate. 

President Trump's restrictions on transgender troops moved a step closer to taking effect, even as several lawsuits challenging the policy remain unresolved.

Madison Waldron has an app on her phone that, on the surface, looks and acts a lot like a fitness tracker. But then there are the survey questions it pushes out to her:

"Questions in regards to what I do for a living, education and things like that," she says as she thumbs through her phone, showing her scheduled doctor visits. "And I get questions as far as my sexual history and my practices."

Imagine being identified by the wrong gender in the lobby of your own doctor’s office, or having trouble finding a job, or being rejected by your own family, because you are a transgender person.

These situations complicate an already difficult daily experience for trans people, and they increase the risk of HIV among an already-vulnerable population in South Florida, according to a new study by Human Rights Watch.

Military service. Bathroom use. Job bias. And now, health care.

The Trump administration is coming under fire for rewriting a federal rule that bars discrimination in health care based on "gender identity." Critics say it's another attempt to undercut acceptance for transgender people.

A federal lawsuit filed by a transgender teen against the St. Johns County school district over the right to use the boys bathroom is being deliberated by a judge.

Health leaders say they are alarmed about a report that officials at the nation's top public health agency are being told not to use certain words or phrases in official budget documents, including "fetus," ''transgender" and "science-based."

Jamie Kruger transitioned years ago to life as a man, both at home and at work. He got surgery four months ago, a mastectomy and reconstruction to give him a more masculine chest.

The largest statewide organization for LGBTQ equality in Florida issued a response to President Donald Trump’s decision to ban transgender service members.

The Trump administration says bathroom use policies regarding gender are best left at the local level, while state lawmakers are considering new workplace protections aimed at the LGBT community.

This week on Florida Matters we’re talking about the latest policy debates surrounding lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals in Florida.

The average age when people are coming out as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender is falling. 

But a climate of growing acceptance doesn't necessarily translate to the current generation of teens wanting to express their sexual orientation or gender identity at school. To some, it's a place that still feels unsafe.

Wiki Commons

Gender identity and bathroom use was a hot button issue in 2016. Last May, the Obama administration sent guidelines to the nation's public schools about restroom use for transgender students.

School districts - including several in Florida - have grappled with the issue. And the U.S. Supreme Court has now entered the debate agreeing to hear a case where a Virginia school district fought the directive.

Quincy J. Walters / WUSF News

November is Transgender Awareness Month and Nov. 20 is Transgender Remembrance Day. On Sunday night, in St. Petersburg, about 80 people gathered at the steps of city hall to hold a candle light vigil for trans people killed this year - most are women of color.

Florida health officials say they will not fight a judge's order that would change the gender on a transgender teen's birth certificate from female to male.


One of the many focuses of this year’s upcoming Human Trafficking Summit may be on Florida’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender, or LGBT community.

Scott, Bondi Remain Mum On Transgender Student Issue

May 19, 2016
U.S. Sen. Rick Scott said Sunday that he was never told by Homeland Security officials in 2016 when he was Florida's governor that Russian hackers had gained access to voter databases in two Florida counties ahead of the presidential election.
MyFloridaHouse.gov

Social conservatives, angered by the federal government's "guidance" that school districts should allow transgender students to use restrooms and other facilities of their choice, are pressuring Gov. Rick Scott and Attorney General Pam Bondi to push back against the initiative.

The Obama administration issued guidance to schools Friday, saying they must allow transgender students to use the bathroom that matches their gender identity.

The administration acknowledges this is "new terrain" for some people and says it wants to help school districts avoid running afoul of civil rights laws.

The St. Petersburg Police Department is launching a new transgender sensitivity training program.

The training comes two months after a Tampa transgender woman's murder — and law enforcement's handling of it — captured national attention.

Each year in Jacksonville, a nonprofit called JASMYN hosts a prom for LGBT youth.

Kourtnee Armanii Davinnie was crowned this year’s prom queen. She’s scared of horses, but loves unicorns. And she sometimes snaps when she talks.

Davinnie holds up a selfie taken in one of her multiple prom dresses.

Bruce Jenner dominated the mediascape this week for emerging as Caitlyn Jenner – in lingerie from a Beverly Hills boutique that evokes 1940s Hollywood - on the cover of Vanity Fair magazine. We talk with The Poynter Institute’s Kelly McBride about Jenner’s skill as a media manipulator, and the evolution of how people talk about transgendered people.

Rep. Frank Artiles’ (R-Miami) controversial single-sex facilities bill passed its second House committee Tuesday.  But the so-called bathroom bill’s progress has been dogged by loud public opposition.

WMFE

Opponents of a bill restricting public bathroom use based on a person’s born gender spoke out in Orlando Tuesday. The Single Sex Public Facilities Bill cleared a house committee last week, and could be heard by a committee as early as next week.

The bill imposes fines and possible jail time for transgender Floridians using the bathroom of the sex they identify with. For example, a transgender man who identifies as a woman could not use the women’s restroom.

  A measure basing which bathroom a person is allowed to use on biology has cleared its first hurdle in the House. The Civil Justice Subcommittee heard more than one dozen testimonies Wednesday for and against the bill, which makes entering a bathroom designated for another sex illegal.

The state should ensure women and girls can feel safe in possibly vulnerable places—such as restrooms and other facilities. That’s Miami Republican Representative Frank Artilles’ argument.

TransSarasota: Changing Attitudes One Person at a Time

Dec 10, 2014
Elaine Litherland/Herald-Tribune Media Group

Two years ago, a City of Sarasota utilities worker prepared to tell her employers that she is a transgender woman who wanted to transition in the workplace. That meant changing her appearance and being acknowledged as female after almost a decade of being addressed as a man at work.