Watch: Trans Activists Talk Importance of Midterms on National Voter Registration Day

Jazz Jennings, Jamie Clayton, Laura Jane Grace, Elliot Fletcher, Tiq Milan, and Meredith Talusan want you to #AmpYourVoice.

Today is National Voter Registration Day, and GLAAD teamed up with transgender activists to remind everyone of the importance of getting out to their polling places for the midterm elections this November.

“This election year, we have the opportunity to change the course of history,” says reality TV star and author Jazz Jennings in the video, part of the organization’s get out the vote initiative, called #AmpYourVoice.

“In so many areas of life, trans people face barriers when attempting to make our voices heard,” notes actress Jamie Clayton, of Sense8 fame.

“With trans equality and our very lives at stake, who we elect now matters more than ever.”

Transgender rights have come to the forefront during the Trump administration, which has rolled back student protections, tried to keep trans soldiers out of the military, and, according to advocates, made life more dangerous for trans inmates.

Meanwhile, this year is on track to become the deadliest on record for transgender Americans.

The video also features writer and speaker Tiq Milan, Against Me! singer and guitarist Laura Jane Grace, journalist Meredith Talusan, and Shameless star Elliot Fletcher.

“Despite barriers, it is still extremely important that trans people and their allies make their voices heard on Election Day,” GLAAD campaign strategist Shane Henise told The Advocate.

“Given the lack of federal protections, decisions around protections based on gender identity happen at the local and state level. Trans people need to ensure their elected officials will stand up for their rights.”

Voting while trans can present problems, as GLAAD notes, pointing to a recent Williams Institute study showing as many as 78,000 transgender Americans could face difficulty casting their ballot due to strict voter ID laws that have passed in many states.

Watch the video from GLAAD below.

 

Pose star Mj Rodriguez also spoke with a representative from GLAAD about the importance of voting, saying “it not only creates a space for people to change a dynamic, but it also creates a space for people to be more aware…and more prominent in what’s right and what’s wrong.”

To take the GLAAD pledge to vote in November, go to glaad.org/ampyourvoice.

And since everything is more fun with friends, MTV is asking voters to pledge to bring a plus one with them to the polls, by going to register.plus1thevote.com.


Click the graphic above to learn about LGBTQ candidates running for office nationwide.

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