Transgender Community Faces Employment Discrimination, Violence

MetroHealth hosted a job fair for transgender people.
MetroHealth hosted a job fair for transgender people. Courtesy: Tina Shaerban Arundel
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Ohio has no statewide law protecting those in the LGBT community from discrimination, although some lawmakers have proposed an LGBT rights bill this legislative session. Transgender people are protected in Cuyahoga County under anti-discrimination legislation passed last year. But for now in Ohio, a transgender employee facing discrimination in the workplace might have no recourse. 

Beyond discrimination, there's the very real fact that transgender people are often targeted for violence. The number of deaths due to "fatal violence" is climbing in the United States, according to the Human Rights Campaign. Last year, there were more murders of transgender people than in any previous year since the organization started recording those numbers in 2013. 

Cleveland is not immune to violence against the transgender community. In 2018, there were at least two murders of transgender women in Cleveland, a sexual assault against a homeless transgender woman, and a number of nonfatal violent attacks. 

  • Ellie Turan, Chair of the Transgender Subcommittee, LGBT Community Center Board 
  • Natalia Hodlik, Senior Technology Specialist, PNC Cleveland 
  • Don Hartman, LGBTQ Employee Business Resource Group, PNC Cleveland
  • Alan Nevel, Head of Diversity, MetroHealth
  • Jacob Nash, Founder and President, Margie’s Hope 
  • Devinity Jones, HIV Prevention and Trans Program Coordinator, LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland 

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