On Wednesday, October 3rd, Sacramento State hosted an event called “How To Be a Better Ally” to help people understand how to be a better ally towards those who are transgender.

This event focused on things like how to respect other’s pronouns, understand what other people are going through and also teaches about gender and sexuality.  Sacramento State hosted this event through a community partner, The Gender Health Center.

“This workshop trains how people, organizations and spaces can provide support, safety and allyship to the trans community,” Keyko Torres said in the beginning of her presentation.  

Students, community members and allies who attended the workshop provided an open and welcoming space.  Topics like gender, fluidity, and respect were discussed. The space was non-judgemental and open to questions.

Workshops like this one help provide support to the trans community and their allies.  Institutions, especially universities, need to provide resources to the different communities that they host.  

For example, changing names on official documents has proven very difficult for many members of the transgender community. This has a huge impact on emotional health.

In 2017, the Association of American Colleges and Universities reported that “52.1 percent of incoming transgender college students reported their emotional health as either below average or in the lowest 10 percent relative to their peers,” according to the findings of Ellen Barza Stollenzberg from the Higher Education research institute of California, Los Angeles.

It is clear that universities need to do more for the transgender community, workshops like this one are definitely a step in the right direction. But, so many believe more can be done. What can we do to be better allies?

For some, this is an obvious answer- “Provide resources for transgender people and listen to them,” Torres said during the workshop.

If you’d like to learn more about what you can do to be a better ally,  visit the Gender Health Center at http://www.thegenderhealthcenter.org/.