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How to talk to your TD about trans healthcare


Overview

Trans Healthcare Action (THA) is a trans-led community organisation. We advocate for an informed consent model for gender-affirming care facilitated by community and primary care providers in Ireland. Transgender and gender diverse people deserve the right to bodily autonomy, as well as safe, affordable healthcare. We need trans healthcare services like hormone therapy accessible to anyone seeking care, without waitlists or gatekeeping.


This blog provides guidance on how to inform your policymakers about the need for local, accessible, informed consent-based trans healthcare.


How do I contact my TD?

You can use our Uplift page to contact your TD. This page makes it easy for you to send an email requesting an appointment to meet about trans healthcare based on our template. 


Alternatively, you can find contact information for your TD on the Oireachtas website. Your TD may offer regular office hours that you can visit them during. Scheduling an appointment with your TD is the most effective way to capture their attention.




What should I say to my TD?

Talk to your TD about why an informed consent model for trans healthcare is important to you and should be on their policy agenda! Tell them that they should advocate for trans healthcare policy based on:


Informed Consent

  • Led by the patient’s own free and informed decisions about their body and treatment

  • Grounded in accurate, evidence-based education on transition

  • Facilitated through discussion on the expectations, benefits, risks, and limitations of any treatment

  • Free from gatekeeping, pathologisation, and discrimination


Community and Primary Care Access

  • Easy to access locally, without a decade-long waiting list for a centralised clinic

  • Delivered by general practitioners (GPs), nurses, and in sexual health clinics

  • Tailored to the individual needs of the patient through a continuous, holistic approach to care

  • Integrated into guidelines and trainings for primary care providers

  • Accessible to trans people in rural communities


If you feel comfortable, we recommend that you share how barriers to trans healthcare have affected you or someone you know. Politicians are most likely to pay attention to your personal experiences.


You can download our policy brief to print and share during your meetings (or ask us to mail you a copy!) and read more on our vision page.


Trans Healthcare Action Policy Brief on Gender-Affirming Healthcare
.pdf
Download PDF • 389KB


What other practical tips do you have?

Talking with policymakers can be daunting, so we want to make sure you feel prepared. Here are some tips:

  • Bring a friend! Not only will this show your TD that this matters to many of their constituents, but it can also help you feel more comfortable.

  • Take references with you! You can take notes beforehand to remind yourself of what you’d like to say and bring a copy of our policy brief.

  • Make it personal! Tell your own story or share the quotes from our policy brief to get the message across.

  • Remember, your TD is accountable to you! We elect our TDs and pay their salaries, and they have a responsibility to represent us.

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