Know Your Rights

Info for Transgender Youth

Transgender and gender-nonconforming young people are everywhere.

Although each one of us has a gender identity–a deep-seated, inner sense of being male or female–not everyone’s gender identity matches the sex that was assigned to them at birth. And, many of us do not match the stereotypes associated with how we should express our gender. 

If you're transgender or gender-nonconforming (TGNC) (read more about LGBTQ terms here) you may face legal obstacles and other challenges (read the transgender youth fact sheet to find out more), including:

Without a distinctly adult set of skills, these challenges can take their toll on you.

If you don’t have a safe place to call home, it’s difficult to get a handle on the other struggles in your life. TGNC youth have a high rate of homelessness because many can’t rely on parental support—whether financial or emotional or both. Mistreatment at school is also so common that many drop out.

However, you have legal rights.

  • Some states have passed gender identity antidiscrimination laws that apply to schools and out-of-home-care settings.
  • Some states have passed laws that specifically prohibit bullying on the basis of gender identity.
  • Even in states that have no such laws, federal statutes like the Equal Access Act and Title IX of the Civil Rights Act protect equal opportunity and free expression.
  • The U.S. Constitution, like many state constitutions, guarantees equal protection—which means that public schools and a range of other facilities must present valid reasons for treating someone differently.

If you need more information about transgender youth and their legal rights, contact Lambda Legal at 866-542-8336 or visit www.lambdalegal.org/help.