Every day during the month of June, we will be spotlighting our 2021 Logo30. This powerful series profiles ordinary and extraordinary people who show pride in unique and provocative ways. Visit the Logo30 homepage to view current and past honorees.
Republican lawmakers across the United States have launched a baseless legislative war against transgender youth, and Chase Strangio is spearheading the fight to protect them.
As the ACLU’s deputy director of transgender justice, Strangio works day in and day out to combat bills that discriminate against trans people. He has worked on the legal teams for plaintiffs like Gavin Grimm, a trans teen in Virginia who fought against a now-infamous “bathroom ban,” and the late Aimee Stephens, a trans woman who was fired from her job after she came out to her manager. Stephens’s workplace discrimination case went all the way to the Supreme Court. Last June, the Court issued a landmark ruling in her favor, establishing a precedent for federal nondiscrimination protections in the workplace for all LGBTQ Americans.
Strangio cites that legal victory as a standout Pride moment for him. “It wasn’t that it was the most radical, transformative thing,” he tells Logo. “I think for me, it was an opportunity for joy and a moment for celebration in the midst of an incredibly hard year, and the culmination of so much work by so many people over generations.”
I am going to pin my annual tracker of anti-trans bills. Legislatures are starting early and are extra cruel this year despite the pandemic. The judiciary is even more hostile so we need to stop these from passing. I will keep updating as more bills come.
— Chase Strangio (@chasestrangio) November 12, 2020
Strangio’s work has only become more urgent in 2021: Since January 1, a record-high number of anti-LGBTQ bills have been introduced in state legislatures nationwide. The bulk of these bills take aim at trans youth, targeting their access to bathrooms, school sports, or life-saving transition-related health care.
“This year, I have just been so incredibly inspired and held up by people who have been organizing on the frontlines in states like Alabama and Arkansas and Oklahoma and Texas,” Strangio adds. “The lawmakers in those states have introduced bill after bill targeting trans people, and I want to continue to see our collective community investment in trans leadership. There’s just so many incredible people doing the work.”
Amen to that! Learn more about Strangio and the rest of our incredible 2021 Logo30 honorees in the video below.