of Trans People
What is an ally?
Generally speaking, an ally is a member of a privileged group who
takes a stand against oppression (examples: a white person who speaks
out against racism; a straight person who works to end heterosexism/homophobia).
An ally works to become part of social change rather than part of
What is a trans ally?
A trans ally is someone who commits to being open-minded and respectful
to people who may have different or unconventional gender identities
or presentations; who takes the time to learn more about trans people
and trans lives; who confronts assumptions around gender roles and
gender presentation; and who works to change the misunderstanding
and mistreatment of transgender and transsexual people.
I'm already an ally to lesbian, gay, and bisexual people.
Aren't I an ally to trans people by default?
In recent years, "LBGT" has become a widely used term to refer collectively to lesbian, bisexual, gay and transgender people. While there are many commonalities and points of overlap amongst transgender and gay, lesbian, and bisexual peoples, there are many issues, concerns, and experiences that are specific to transgender people.
In order to be a good ally to trans people, it is important to learn about how the lives and concerns of trans people differ from those of LBG people. Learning more about these differences will enable allies to better support and understand people who are transgender and/or bisexual, lesbian, or gay.
How can I learn how to be a better trans ally?
Trans@mit is happy to offer several kinds of resources, including tip sheets, reading recommendations, and in-person trainings. Check out the navigation links on the left side of this page for more information!
For information about MIT’s current policies and practices, see “Being Trans@MIT” or contact us directly.