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TRUUsT has released a Report on Experiences of Trans Unitarian Universalists
Dear Beloveds,

As a nonbinary, queer seminarian who only officially became a Unitarian Universalist four years ago, I've had to navigate a wide array of relationships and communities in which I've felt varying levels of acceptance. While Unitarian Universalism's welcoming stance on LGBTQ+ issues was one of the aspects that drew me to the denomination, I would be lying if I said I've always felt fully accepted as a nonbinary person in UU spaces.

This year, I joined TRUUsT, a group for trans* UU religious professionals, and I was fortunate enough to attend the annual TRUUsT retreat. The feeling of being surrounded by other trans and nonbinary folks who are called to be religious professionals was a mixture of relief, joy, and determination. While it was amazing to meet and befriend these powerful, beautiful individuals and to share common experiences, I was struck by how many of us had had similar ambivalent or downright negative experiences within UUism. It was clear that while a lot of progress had been made, Unitarian Universalism as a whole has a long way to go to be fully welcoming of trans people.

TRUUsT recently released a Report on the Experiences of Trans Unitarian Universalists. This report was based on a 2018 survey that TRUUsT conducted along with
the UUA’s Multicultural Ministries office. You can read the full report here and TRUUsT’s Executive Summary HERE.

I'm hopeful that uplifting these findings will help the UUA and UU congregations to do the work to become more completely welcoming.

Amen & Blessed Be,

Jade

How Welcoming Are We?

Many UU Congregations participate in the Welcoming Congregations program and consider themselves to be LGBTQ+ inclusive. It may be surprising
therefore for cis congregants to discover that:

  • 72% of trans UUs do not feel as though their congregation is completely inclusive of them as trans people

  • 42% of trans UUs regularly experience trans-related marginalization in UU spaces.

  • Non-binary individuals makeup the majority (61%) of trans Unitarian Universalists, but feel less inclusivity and more marginalizations than their binary trans brothers and sisters.

Addressing Trans Intersectionality

When trans identities intersect with other marginalized identities such as race, ability, and class, the findings are even
starker:

  • Only 15% of trans people of color and only 12% of disabled, nonbinary people of color feel that their congregation is completely inclusive.

  • Trans UUs trend slightly more racially diverse than UUs in general.

  • 56% of trans UUs have at least one disability.

  • Though as a whole Unitarian Universalists are wealthier than the US population, 49% of trans UUs do not have enough income to reasonably meet their personal needs.


Let’s Get to Work!

These results show that Unitarian Universalism still has a ways to go to be a fully welcoming faith. However, TRUUsT also points the way forward, and lists....
Five Concrete Ways to Support Trans UUs starting now.

Learn more here.

The UUA and TRUUsT will engage in a strategic conversation about where the UUA’s work over the next 5 years could help lead to different outcomes and impacts for trans UUs. Likewise, we urge you to read TRUUsT’s Executive Summary and full report and consider its immediate and long range implications on trans persons in your congregation and throughout Unitarian Universalism. Thanks to this informative report, we can now begin to truly move forward.
Jade (they/them/theirs)
Jade Sylvan, TRUUsT Member
LGBTQ+ Ministries Intern
Unitarian Universalist Association
 
 
 
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