NYT: One in every 137 teens identify as transgender
The New York Times reported that there are nearly 150,000 American teens from the ages of 13 to 17 years old that would identify as transgender, or one in 137. Reporter Niraj Chokshi wrote this in response to an analysis of state and federal data.
This figure, according to Chokshi, could help lawmakers and advocates across the nation understand the population they are representing better. The author also said this figure “stands to inform the fierce debate over rights of transgender youth.”
Jody L. Herman, a scholar of public policy at the Williams Institute at the U.C.L.A. School of Law believes policy debates should be backed up with data.
“We want to make sure that policy debates are informed by actual figures,” Herman said.
The report also included estimates of the transgender population in each state and in different age groups. In addition to estimating that 0.7% of the population ages 13 to 17 identify as transgender, Dr. Herman and her team found that there are nearly 1.4 million transgender adults in the U.S.
A study done by The Williams Institute found that about 22,200 teens in California, 13,800 in Texas and 9,750 identify as transgender “when asked.” North Dakota and Wyoming had the smallest number with just an estimated 200 each. Hawaii and West Virginia lead with nearly 1 in 100 teens.
Kellan Baker, a senior fellow at the liberal Center for American Progress who specializes in L.G.B.T. and health issues believes these numbers are important to moblizie resources where they will be most effective.
“It’s not about what your gut tells you, it’s not about what the news last night told you, it’s not about what you think you might have gathered from looking at a couple of internet websites. It’s about what do the data actually say, so that we can target resources where they will do the most good,” Baker said.