The Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) celebrates President Biden’s historic support for transgender Americans. Consistent with immediate actions to address systemic racism, sexism, and implicit bias, the Biden-Harris Administration signed executive orders prohibiting discrimination on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation and enabling transgender Americans to serve in the military. In addition, President Biden added pronoun options to the contact form at WhiteHouse.gov, and the nomination of Dr. Rachel Levine as Assistant Secretary for Health at the Department of Health. If confirmed, Dr. Levine would be the first openly transgender person appointed to a federal position and approved by the U.S. Senate.
These swift and courageous orders affirm our Unitarian Universalist belief that all people are worthy and called to faithfully build the Beloved Community. Such actions have come about due to years of relentless organizing and advocacy by the transgender community and their allies. As a gay Air Force veteran prohibited from disclosing my sexuality during 12 years of military service, I experienced first-hand the spiritual and emotional harm “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” called for by forcing me to hide my sexuality.
Unitarian Universalists unequivocally support the full humanity of people across the spectrum of gender and sexuality. This important truth is universal and should not shift from one administration to the next. As such, the UUA calls on Congress to immediately pass the Equality Act which would legalize comprehensive protections for all people without regard to “basis of the sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or pregnancy, childbirth, or a related medical condition of an individual, as well as because of sex-based stereotypes.
During these most urgent of days, our hearts turn to the many communities of transgender, gender non-conforming, and all who are historically marginalized as we continue to fight for our right to exist as we are and chose to be. We urge our cisgender, white-identified, Black, indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) Unitarian Universalist siblings to join in affirming, supporting, and celebrating our difference, our worth, and our on-going struggle to be fully free.