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June 24, 2013 at 7:39 AM

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Gender Justice League discusses TransPride


ERIKA SCHULTZ / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Danielle Askini, 30, Gender Justice League executive director, has been a trans woman since the age of 15, and is helping launch TransPride, an event specifically for the transgender, gender non-conforming community and their allies. “It’s just really important to have our own event,” Askini said. “Since we’re such a small community it’s amazing to be able to see other people like me everywhere."

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Seattle Times photographer Erika Schultz asked members of the Gender Justice League to sit for portraits and discuss their feelings about their upcoming TransPride event. They represent a small part of the full gender spectrum.

ERIKA SCHULTZ / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Gwyneth Yeh, 30, Gender Justice League media director, identifies as a trans woman and works as a video game artist. “TransPride is a way of rejecting the stereotypes we’ve been given about trans in mainstream media and to show that there is hope and optimism,” she said. Yeh came out as a trans woman at the age of 25 in 2008.

ERIKA SCHULTZ/ THE SEATTLE TIMES

LEFT: Joanna Colson, 57, identifies as trans woman and is a network engineer. "Transition for me meant that I was able to be myself, truly," Colson said. "I wasn't having to be somebody that I wasn't in order to try to fit in." RIGHT: Finn Cottom, 29, is the program director of Reel Queer Youth. Cottom identifies as gender queer. "I don't identify as a man or a woman, it doesn't fit a narrow definition," Cottom said. "I'm on testosterone, but I also love fem fashion." Cottom believes the upcoming TransPride event is an opportunity to,“…see the beauty that’s inherent in ourselves and each other by coming together in the community.”

ERIKA SCHULTZ / THE SEATTLE TIMES

Jennifer Popkin, 31, Gender Justice League deputy director, identifies as a lesbian trans woman and is a vocal coach for transgender women. “The trans community, which is anybody with any kind of gender variation, tends to face higher levels of discrimination, joblessness, homelessness, incarceration, violence, domestic violence,” Popkin said.

ERIKA SCHULTZ / THE SEATTLE TIMES

LEFT: Elayne Wylie, 40, Gender Justice League secretary, identifies as a trans woman and works in Seattle as a film producer. "Ninety percent of trans people experience some form of major discrimination in their life for who they are," Wylie said, citing a 2011 National Transgender Discrimination Survey. "Identifying as the gender you were born and raised in is a privilege most people possess, but a few of us don't," Wylie said. RIGHT: Dr. Bobbi Dalley, 56, is a neuroradiologist who has identified as trans woman since 2010. She sees health care disparities in the transgender community, such as insurance exclusions that prevent patients from getting care, and "discrimination in the medical offices. There is a lot of education left to do."

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Glad to hear these women and men are ready for the spotlight and ready to be more open... MORE
And the absurd thing is that what offends others is transpersons just existing. Not... MORE
Dawgfolk equates transgender and beastiality. That's absurd. He also equates... MORE

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