There are approximately 15,000 people living in Mississippi who identify as transgender or gender non-conforming (GNC). All of them are subject to discrimination because of their gender identity due to the lack of protections. No one should be denied a job, a place to live, or access to a public place or business simply because of who they are. Unfortunately, this kind of rejection is all too common for transgender people. There is much work to be done across Mississippi to make sure that transgender and GNC people are visible, accepted, supported, protected, and treated equally under the law.
I TOO AM MISSISSIPPI STORYTELLING PROJECT
I Too Am Mississippi
The “I Too Am Mississippi Story Telling Project” introduces you to Shaun, Alicia, Fiona, Stephenie, and Jensen, and includes their personal stories through video, a pop-up mobile exhibit, and catalog of photos. We hope that their stories help build a bridge between the sociological perceptions and the individually lived realities of trans Mississippians.
The I Too Am Mississippi Story Telling Project is designed to elevate the voices, faces, and lives of Mississippi’s transgender citizens. This project challenges restrictive narratives about who belongs and who gets to participate fully. Bias, whether explicit or implicit, is a system that operates at all levels of our society – individual, structural and institutional. Bias can be unpacked through story in ways that are more accessible than by providing data alone. By understanding the human toll of discrimination and institutionalized barriers, we can advance justice and dismantle the hatred of difference. Story also allows us to explore the commonalities we all share - hope, family, a desire for security, and to live our lives fully.
Meet Shaun. For him, the T in LGBT means more than 'transgender.' It means truth.
Meet Alicia, the mother of her transgender daughter. She says when people find out about Dee, they ask how she has dealt with losing her son. For her, she never had a son. Instead, she was gaining her authentic child.
Meet Fiona. She says she has peace of mind now that she's living the gender that she's always been.
Meet Jensen, who says he's always been the same person. One thing we all have in common, he says, is that we're all different. Embracing those differences will help Mississippi achieve more.
Meet Stephenie, a 71-year old transgender woman who knew she was different at only four years old. She says Mississippi needs more support services for transgender individuals who are coming to terms with their true identity.