NJ uses COVID money for new transgender website
🏳🌈 Gov. Murphy announces new website to serve non-binary and transgender residents
⚖ The site will link to legal services and mental health resources
💲 Funds from the American Rescue Plan were used for the sites development and launch
New Jersey is using federal COVID relief money to launch a new website serving the Garden State's non-binary and transgender community.
Launched as a beta site on March 31 to coincide with International Transgender Day of Visibility, the site is designed as a resource to find information about essential programs and services.
Answering questions like, "How can I change my legal name," and "Where can I get mental health support," the site also offers to connects to legal assistance.
Gov. Phil Murphy says the transgender and non-binary community often face barriers to accessing needed services.
"In New Jersey, we must ensure that we are leading the nation by making a concerted effort to streamline and simplify access to important services, programs, and protections," Murphy said in a statement.
The new site has the full support of LGBTQ organizations, who helped design the site and select the services it would link to.
"By improving access to services and resources that will materially improve the lives of trans New Jersey residents, the Garden State continues to lead the nation on trans equality," said Christian Fuscarino, Executive Director of Garden State Equality in a statement.
Murphy signed a series of executive orders and legislation 2022 to strengthen name change confidentiality protections, certification of LGBTQ+ owned businesses codifying marriage equality to ensure gender neutrality of all marriage and civil union laws in New Jersey.
The Murphy administration says Transgender.NJ.gov remains a work in progress.
New Jersey State Chief Innovation Officer Beth Simone Noveck says the goal is "to make it increasingly reflective of the transgender and non-binary community's needs, we look forward to continuing to work hand-in-hand with the New Jerseyans who will benefit from this site."
Development of the website was funding, at least in part, using money New Jersey received from the federal American Rescue Plan. The funding was intended to streamline, simplify, and improve how New Jersey delivers benefits and services to residents.