A new and comprehensive report about the current state of transgender persons in the workplace can be downloaded from here.
Some hard stats:
The unemployment rate (2011 data) for transgender population as a whole was 14% at a time when the unemployment rate for the general population was 7%. The unemployment rate for transgender people of color, however, was as high as 28% (Black). The Native American transgender unemployment rate was 24%, Latinos 18%, and multiracial 18%. Forty-four percent who were working at that time said they were underemployed (working part-time or temporary jobs or overqualified for the job they had).
Transgender people are nearly four times (15%) as likely to to have an income under $10,000 per year than the general population (4%). Thus many of us who do find work are “working poor.” MAP analyzed 14 studies of income data in 2009 and found that 46% of transgender people earned no more than $15,300 annually. A study in California found that transgender people were twice as likely to live below the poverty line than the general population.
This is somewhat disheartening, given the tremendous backing the Obama Administration has given transgender persons in so many ways. My guess is that the Labor Department personnel who are asked are just afraid of coming out definitively with a statement, and would rather the judiciary handle it (as they have, in Macy v. Holder et al).
Thank you Devin Payne for this link. This is huge news – while the outcome of Macy v. Holder in 2012 paved the way for a sea-change in transgender employment practices, this is the first case which went the full 9 yards after Macy, and it’s a win! I can’t emphasize how important this is, and it helps start the chain of setting precedent for protecting the jobs of transgender persons.