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For a week each year from November 13th to November 19th, people across the country celebrate Transgender Awareness Week—a time to increase visibility for transgender people, and confront the challenges faced by members of the transgender community. At the close of the week, Transgender Day of Remembrance, observed annually on November 20th, honors the memory of transgender people whose lives were lost to acts of anti-trans violence.

While we can take this time to reflect on the progress that has been made for the transgender community, we can’t turn away from the very real threat and discrimination the community faces every day.

According to the Human Rights Campaign, 2021 has been slated to be the worst year for anti-LGBTQIA+ legislation in history. States throughout the country have pushed legislation that directly affects those in the transgender community, attempting to ban them from inclusion in sports, bar them from medical care, and prohibit them from using the restroom consistent with their gender identity.

On top of that, transgender people deal with the very real threat of violence against their community every day. The Williams Institute of UCLA’s School of Law recently reported that transgender people are four times more likely to be victims of violent crime than cisgender people.

With the constant threat to their safety and attacks on their community, it is imperative that transgender people have access to high-quality, compassionate mental health care services from providers that they can trust and feel safe with. 

At Planned Parenthood of Orange & San Bernardino Counties (PPOSBC), we recognized a real need in the community for access to this level of care, and recently began offering online behavioral health  services through Melody Health where we provide primary care.

“Many patients need support when it comes to their mental health. We’re proud to be able to provide trans-inclusive behavioral health services that support mental wellbeing and recognize patients’ lived intersectional experiences in this world,” said Dr. Connolly, MD, PPOSBC’s associate medical director.

“Those in the transgender community deserve access to supportive care. Not only do we provide a safe place for patients to receive confidential and compassionate reproductive and primary care, we are now able to serve a support when it comes to their mental health,” said Dr. Shayne Poulin, MD, PPOSBC.

Planned Parenthood of Orange & San Bernardino Counties is proud to celebrate Transgender Awareness Week and will continue to provide, and advocate for access to quality care for members of the trans community. 

To learn more about mental health services visit MelodyHealth.org.

Tags: transgender, trans health, transgender-issues, trans rights