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Trans joy event fights hate with love amidst legislative session marked by anti-LGBTQ bills

Demonstrators carry LGBT, Transgender and Non-binary flags during celebrations of the Portuguese Carnations Revolution in Lisbon, Tuesday, April 25, 2023. (AP Photo/Armando Franca)
Armando Franca/AP
Volunteers at the trans joy event will make care packages for transgender and gender nonconforming people.

Some Central Florida nonprofits are fighting anti-trans legislation with love Wednesday, April 26, by putting together care packages for transgender people in the Orlando area.

Transgender people in Florida have been targeted by legislation banning gender-affirming care, book and bathroom bans, and rules limiting the sports teams they can play on.

That’s why Peer Support Space’s Yasmin Flasterstein says the nonprofit is teaming up with Hope Community Center and the Mexican Consulate to fight back with love.

Flasterstein said they’re looking for volunteers to help put together care packages Wednesday for local transgender and gender nonconforming people that come to the center seeking mental health support.

“I don't know of a trans person that isn't really struggling mentally right now," said Flasterstein. "And we just wanted to be able to do something positive. I think that those in positions of power that are targeting the transgender community right now, I don't think they're representative of the community members in Florida, especially in Orlando.”

Flasterstein said each care package will include a handwritten letter, along with a transgender pride flag, LGBTQ pride patches and ribbons, small unicorn plushies, stickers, and pins.

“I'm someone who struggles with depression and anxiety and I know in my hardest times a small act of kindness has definitely pushed me to keep going even if it's just for another day or another moment," said Flasterstein. "So the hope is that you know, the world is so dark right now and we're hoping we can at least be a pocket of joy in all of this.”

The bills are part of a Republican agenda during the Florida legislative session, where the state GOP has a supermajority.

The event will be held from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday. To attend, email mary@peersupportspace.org for the address. The address is being kept private in order to ensure participants' safety.

For a list of anti-LGBTQ bills by state, click here.

Danielle Prieur covers education in Central Florida.
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