Transgender people want council created to solve problems Chennai news



CHENNAI: Grace Banu, trans activist and founder of Trans Rights Now Collective, said she and members of the community have written countless letters to authorities in recent months about the need to reactivate the Aid Council social for transgender people.
“At a time when we desperately need help and representation, we have no one to turn to,” Grace said.
“This is the only way to address our grievances. And I haven’t received a response yet,” Grace said.
It has been almost five months since the transgender welfare board became inactive. The council is supposed to respond to the complaints of the community and help them put them on the same level as the rest of the population. It consists of 11 civil servants, including the Minister of Social Protection, who is the chairman, and 12 transgender people, who are unofficial members.
Senior officials in the welfare department said that most of its members’ terms ended last year and assembly elections further delayed the selection process. “We have started shortlisting candidates and will form a new board in the coming weeks,” the official said.
“People are losing their jobs, have no ration card, no money and no housing. The board has been inconsistent in its work even last year, ”said Juvena, a 28-year-old transsexual, who lost her job as an accountant due to the pandemic last year.
Juvena said the majority of them do not have a ration card, which prevents them from accessing state social assistance.
A few transgender people living near the Valluvarkottam highway said that due to their dire situation, many of them are forced to beg or prostitute themselves. “Even the most educated, who had jobs in private companies, are now struggling to make ends meet,” said * Rani, a food stall owner.
During last year’s lockdown, the previous government announced additional monthly aid of Rs. 1,000 for transgender people, which did not last long either.
“We don’t know how long the pandemic will last, and it’s high time for authorities to step in and fix our problems,” Grace said.
(* Name changed)


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