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Agency offers support ahead of International Transgender Visibility Day

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The transgender community is one of many topics front and center in Indiana politics.

With International Transgender Visibility Day approaching fast, an Indianapolis-based nonprofit is taking steps to provide affirming care and support.

TransSolutions Research and Resource Center is a nonprofit led by trans women of color. Manager of Health and Holistic Care, Aundrea Lacy, has dedicated her life to serving her community and does so with her work at TransSolutions by working to create spaces for people to recognize their self-worth.

Lacy said, “When my parents accepted me for being who I was, I knew that nobody else could tell me anything different. That was the only acceptance I asked for in this whole world.”

The acronym “LGBTQ+” is often seen as an individual group, but data suggests trans people of color face some of the highest levels of discrimination. Trans women are a pocket of the population, Lacy says, that can be targeted through violence and legislation, while often also being ignored.

Lacy also says that the life expectancy for trans people of color is 35 years old, with many committing suicide. ” … I transitioned when I was underage. And I tell people all the time, I wouldn’t have been here if I didn’t transition as young as I did,” Lacy said.

With International Transgender Day of Visibility on March 31 approaching, TransSolutions and its partners, Brothers United Wellness and Broadway United Methodist Church, are shining a spotlight on the value of affirming care by opening up registration for a one-day makeover event on March 30.

The event will provide hairstyling, haircuts, make-up, clothing, and more for people who are trans and non-gender conforming.

Lacy says that it’s to help people feel good “because sometimes gender-affirming your look is really big to you.”

Lacy also said, “Trans people ain’t something we choose to be. No one chooses to have a hard life. No one chooses to be the oppressed one”, and says as a reminder that kindness is free.

TransSolutions opened in 2021 and continues to build on its work. On March 31, they will unveil a new partnership providing computer and internet access, and a ribbon-cutting for a program supporting applications for Medicaid, SNAP, jobs, and more. Lacy says while the road is still rough for many, she is hopeful the path will get smoother.

Registration is required for the makeover event though all are welcome to the ribbon-cutting on March 31.