Taking into consideration the general public’s perspective, Gossip Boys & Girls series were written in the language for the wider population. Gossip in Chinese is 是非. It also means Right and Wrong. Gender and sexuality of a person could always be the focus in gossips among people no matter you are LGBT people or not. What even worst is that transgender people are always judged by the others as “right or wrong”. Two of my best transgender friends were unable to bear the suppression and committed suicide one in 2004, and another one in 2008. Another gay friend of mine has committed suicide recently in Jan 2017. What caused them to make such a decision? Is it their fault being true to themselves? I hope this handbook laid out from the experience of a transgender person who has overcame those unspeakable difficulties in life will give you more insight about the transgender community in Hong Kong.
Joanne was born as a boy in Hong Kong and completed her Sex Reassignment Surgery in 2009 after struggling for over 40 years. Yet she still insists to claim herself as a Transgender Lesbian Christian even after she has acquired her legal gender as a female. She is now a public figure in the LGBT movement devoted to the supporting works in the community as well as advocacy for LGBT and human rights in Hong Kong and Mainland China.
She founded Transgender Resource Center (TGR) in 2008 and have been the chairperson since then. The aim of the organization is promote public understanding and acceptance regarding the transgender community, and to provide resources and support for transgender people. She also took up the chair position of the leading LGBT organization Pink Alliance from 2015 to 2017 and brought the largest LGBT activity Pink Dot into Hong Kong.
In 2012, Joanne was selected one of the “45 People aged 45 or below making a difference in Hong Kong” by Baccarat Magazine and in 2013 she received the “She dare to change” Award by HER Fund. In 2016, Joanne has taken a big step forward in the LGBT movement by joining the Democratic Party as the first transgender politician in Hong Kong and participated in the Legislative Council pre-election trying to push for change not only for the LGBT community but a broader group of people in civil society.
In 2017, the U.S. Consulate Hong Kong and Macau selected Joanne as this year’s nominee for the Secretary’s International Women of Courage Award honoring women who have demonstrated exceptional courage, strength, and leadership in acting to improve others’ lives. She was invited to Washington, D.C., for an official awards ceremony and a program of activities as part of the Department’s observance of International Women’s Day in March.
When Stevie’s social worker tells Cathy, an experienced foster carer, that Stevie, 14, is gender fluid she isn’t sure what that term means and looks it up.
Stevie, together with his younger brother and sister, have been brought up by their grandparents as their mother is in prison. But the grandparents can no longer cope with Stevie’s behaviour so they place him in care.
Stevie is exploring his gender identity, and like many young people he spends time online. Cathy warns him about the dangers of talking to strangers online and advises him how to stay safe. When his younger siblings tell their grandmother that they have a secret they can’t tell, Cathy is worried. However, nothing could have prepared her for the truth when Stevie finally breaks down and confesses what he’s done.