(Washington, DC, September 20, 2016)–Today, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) issued a final rule requiring equal treatment of transgender people in federally funded emergency shelters. Today’s rule provides that transgender individuals must be housed based on their gender identity. This rule amends the groundbreaking LGBTQ Equal Access Rule issued by HUD in 2012 that prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and marital status in public housing and HUD’s core housing programs.

Statement by National Center for Lesbian Rights Policy Director Julianna Gonen, Esq:

“We applaud HUD for providing such clear guidance to shelters and for affirming the equality and dignity of transgender people. This new rule ensures that no transgender person will be denied shelter simply because of who they are and that transgender women, in particular, will no longer be forced to choose between being housed with men or going without shelter. This is a huge step forward for the transgender community and will empower transgender individuals who need shelter to stand up for their rights.  We strongly support this rule and the example that it sets for policymakers across the country that our laws and policies should respect and affirm the people they affect.”