Last month, the Trump administration proposed a new regulation attacking trans people’s access to health care. If this rule is finalized (note: you can still take action to stop it!), transgender people of color living with HIV will be some of the most intensely impacted.
The good news is we have incredible community advocates like Arianna Lint who have long led the fight to protect trans health. A national advisory board member for TLC’s Positively Trans program and founder of Arianna’s Center in South Florida, Arianna gives us hope in this moment of intense attack on our communities.
Most recently, Arianna’s Center — with the support of Positively Trans — released a groundbreaking report on needs and conditions for transgender and gender nonconforming people living with HIV in South Florida. The findings from the 2018 needs assessment survey are deeply concerning: nearly one in two transgender and gender nonconforming people living with HIV in South Florida had been attacked on the street in the past year, 43% reported having gone six months or more without HIV treatment, 59% had experienced incarceration in their lifetime, and 51% were currently unemployed. Respondents also, though, indicated a clear path forward: prioritizing issues of employment, housing, and HIV-related discrimination, working to make accurate identity documents more accessible, and dealing with law enforcement.
This report models Arianna’s approach to leadership and creating change: organizing, listening to, and investing deeply in trans community, and prioritizing the needs of transgender women of color living with HIV.
Arianna launched Arianna’s Center in 2015 to provide services for the most marginalized community in South Florida, but specifically the transgender population. She said what inspired her to open the center was “in the transgender group or community, we have more marginalized communities, like transgender [people] living with HIV, those who receive incarceration, dealing day by day when surviving homelessness, that is what inspired me in opening the center.” Her organization serves all members of South Florida trans community and they leave out no one, from undocumented people to those who have been incarcerated.
The Center has an incarceration program that provide services for transgender individuals. They’re even currently working with the Department of Health locally, and they have testing site numbers, so they can start getting testing to the most isolated communities in the outreach area.
TLC couldn’t be any prouder and honored to have Arianna Lint serving on the Positively Trans advisory board and to be working alongside her fighting for the lives of trans people living with HIV. Arianna says that “I could not keep dealing and dealing with the system if I did not receive the help of Positively Trans. I am so happy, humble, to get the knowledge from Positively Trans.” Her advice for those living with HIV is “just continue living your life, don’t stop, and if you’re living with HIV you have to educate yourself first, second one is getting involved, and getting undetectable that’s it”.
We commend your work Arianna and what your inspiring dedication for the transgender community! Find out more about Arianna’s Center here!