New Study Finds Discrimination Against Massachusetts’ Transgender Population Contributes To Widespread Poverty, Costs State Millions

For Immediate Release

May 12, 2011

Contact: Jesse Pack


A new research study released yesterday by The Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law and Public Policy shows that employment discrimination against transgender residents of Massachusetts likely costs the state millions of dollars each year. The Williams Institute study is based on the findings of the National Transgender Discrimination Survey, which found that approximately 15% of Massachusetts transgender residents live on less than $10,000 a year, while only 3% of the general population of the Commonwealth make this amount. This increased level of poverty likely costs the state a minimum of $2 million in lost tax revenue and is likely due to rampant discrimination in employment and education. The Williams Institute study also estimates that public assistance expenditures in the form of health and housing assistance likely costs the state millions of dollars per year as well.

“These studies confirm what we have suspected for a number of years”, said Jesse Pack, founder of the Transgender Emergency Fund. “Trans people in Massachusetts are five times more likely than the general population to be living on $10,000 or less a year. This is due to discrimination and it is not going to stop until we have state-wide protective legislation. This concentrated level of poverty costs the state millions of dollars and has a devastating impact on the transgender population. When we started the emergency fund three years ago, it was in response to trans people desperately seeking help for housing and utilities.”

The first program of its kind, the Transgender Emergency Fund provides emergency financial assistance to low-income transgender residents of Massachusetts. Founded in 2008, the fund has provided more than $20,000 in assistance to more than 100 transgender residents. The fund is run entirely by transgender and allied volunteers.

To view the Williams Institute study or the Massachusetts findings of the National Transgender Discrimination Survey, please visit .


About TEF: Founded in 2008, the Transgender Emergency Fund provides short-term financial assistance to low-income transgender residents in Massachusetts. For more information, visit or contact Jesse Pack at (508) 755-3773 or .

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Unbound By Body 2011 Calendar Available–Get Yours Today!

Unbound By Body, our 2011 fundraising calendar, is now available for purchase! Unbound By Body features portraits of transgender community members from throughout Massachusetts.  The first of its kind–a calendar featuring transpeople to help other transpeople–you can get your own for only $10 (plus $3 for shipping and handling)! This is the perfect gift for the Pride season, birthdays, or holidays. Order now while they’re still available!

You can order by clicking on our Paypal cart below or send your payment to:

Transgender Emergency Fund
c/o AIDS Project Worcester
85 Green Street, Worcester MA, 01604

Buy Calendar via PayPal

We want to thank Jess Dugan who provided photography, Heather Latham for layout, and everyone else who donated their time to help with the production of this fabulous calendar!

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Unbound By Body Launch Party A Success!

Thank you to all of our supporters who came out last night to the Unbound By Body Launch Party! So many of you came out to show your support not only for the Transgender Emergency Fund but for this new fundraising effort. Thanks again everyone! Unbound By Body, the 2011 fundraising calendar for TEF, will be available for purchase here online shortly.

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Unbound By Body Calendar Launch Party!

The Transgender Emergency Fund is still going
strong and this year we’re selling a 2011 calendar, Unbound By Body, featuring
trans-identified community members from across the state of Massachusetts. To
our knowledge, a project like this has not ever been done before and we’re very
excited about it. So we’re throwing a party and you’re invited!

A pdf of the flyer is at the bottom of this post.

What: Unbound By Body Launch Party
When: June 3rd, 6:30pm-10:00pm
Where: Club Cafe, Moonshine Room, 209 Columbus Ave, Boston

This event is FREE but bring some change to get your own calendar.

For those of you who can’t make the party, the calendar will be on sale online
and at various events throughout the year after the party. For an idea of who is in the calendar, check out the blog of our photographer, Jess Dugan.

Calendar Party Flyer

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2 Years, $18,000 Distributed To People In Need

The TEF Steering Committee has just released our financial statement for the past fiscal year. You can download it to read below. Since its creation in 2008, TEF has distributed approximately $18,000 to more than 74 transpeople in need throughout Massachusetts. What started as a local effort amongst friends in Worcester, Massachusetts has grown into a state-wide organization and has ignited similar efforts throughout the United States. None of this would have been possible without the support of people like you. Thank you all for your continued support!

Download: 2010 Financial Statement (pdf)

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A Call For Participants For TEF’s 2011 Fundraiser Calendar!

UNBOUND BY BODY: A calender featuring trans identified individuals of all genders

The Transgender Emergency Fund is currently looking for Trans identified individuals of all genders to participate in its fundraising venture “Unbound by Body.” In addition to raising money for the fund; the calendar’s intent is to showcase wonderful transgender individuals in an edgy, artistic manner without perpetuating societal stereotypes and beliefs.

All Applicants are asked to create an alter-ego or a character. Someone or something you would like to portray that has inspired you. Anything that you’ve always dreamed of being or doing. You must submit a general photo and a mini bio in 75 words please include: name or alias, date of birth (astrological sign optional) and your declaration of who/what you desire to portray, why, and where you envision the character. Also include your contact info (phone/email/etc)

To receive an application to complete, contact:
Tre’Andre Rivera-Valentine at

Applications MUST be received by MARCH 1ST

ALL applicants must be 18 and/or older to participate

If you have any questions, feel free to email:
We will be contacting you to set up time, date and space for the calendar photo-shoot.

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TEF Annual Winter Brunch This Sunday, January 24th, 11am-3pm

Join us for a delicious brunch while showing your support for the Transgender Emergency Fund! Featuring: music by Cha Cha Connor and Nat Needle, silent auction, 50/50 raffle.

Tickets: $15 in advance, $20 at the door. To order advance tickets or donate to our silent auction (all donations tax-deductible!), contact Jesse Pack at (508) 755-3773 or

Location: 86 Winter American Bistro at 65 WATER STREET, Worcester MA. For directions, call (508) 459-5400 or visit…

The Transgender Emergency Fund provides financial assistance with housing, utilities, and medical and prescription co-pays to low-income transgender people residing in Massachusetts. The TEF is fiscally sponsored by AIDS Project Worcester, Inc. and all donations are tax-deductible. To learn more about TEF, or to donate online, please visit

Thanks in advance for your support!

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Remember The Transgender Emergency Fund During This Holiday Season


During this time of year, please take a moment to help those in our community who are struggling to survive by giving whatever you can to the Transgender Emergency Fund (TEF). The TEF provides short-term financial assistance to low-income transgender people living in Massachusetts. The TEF is completely run by volunteers with no overhead, which means that all money raised goes directly to those in need. TEF is fiscally sponsored by AIDS Project Worcester, a registered 501c3 organization, so all donations are tax deductible. Please take a second and donate whatever you can–even $10 can make a difference in someone’s life. You can donate easily through our Facebook page.

Also consider downloading the new ‘Shop for a Cause’ feature being offered through facebook. By using this feature, you can generate donations for TEF through your websearches. To learn more about Shop for a Cause or to download, check out:

Thank you all for your support for TEF during 2009 and have a wonderful holiday season!

Jesse Pack

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Transgender Day of Remembrance

This Friday, November 20th, is the 11th Annual Transgender Day of Remembrance. This is a time set aside every year to remember and honor those we have lost due to violence. Communities throughout the world are holding memorial services and events. To find an event near you, check out:
If you are not able to attend an event, please take a moment during the day to reflect upon and remember those we have lost this year.

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Don’t Forget! TEF Fundraiser Podcast This Sunday Evening!

Trans Emergency Fund Podothon!–Tune In This Sunday And Support Us!

Sunday, November 15th is the start of Transgender Awareness Week! Kick off this important event with the TransFM charity podothon! From 6pm-10pm on Sunday, November 15th, we’ll be raising money for the Transgender Emergency Fund (TEF). Guests will include Gunner Scott, Director of the Massachusetts Trqansgender Political Coalition (MTPC), Jesse Pack, co-founder of TEF, members of the current steering committee, and many more.

Tune in next Sunday to the TransFM broadcast and join us! To tune in, set your browsers to or listen directly at
TransFM welcomes live callers, so dial up the studio at 978-518-1835!

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