National News Highlights — July 15, 2022

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Photo by Graeme Sloan / Sipa USA via AP
Photo by Graeme Sloan / Sipa USA via AP

Florida trailer park charged with anti-Trans discrimination
NBC News reported on July 8 that the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) has charged Nathan Dykgraaf, the owner of the 21 Palms RV Resort, with discrimination after he demanded a Trans woman present as male or else be evicted from her mobile home.

The resident has lived at 21 Palms with her child and fiancé for years, and came out as Trans in early 2021. Nine days after the resident began "wearing feminine-presenting clothing in public," Dykgraaf allegedly sent the woman a handwritten notice:

"I have been informed of your actions to have your sex changed to a female. I am told you have started taking the necessary medication and that after a period of time your change will be completed," the note allegedly said. "To avoid problems you must: 1. Act as a man 2. Talk as a man 3. Dress as a man 4. Avoid tight clothing that is revealing of your sexual organs. If you follow the above steps, trouble will be avoided."

The resident filed a complaint a month later, citing the Fair Housing Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, sex, and gender identity. In response, Dykgraaf told the HUD that the resident is "not free to engage with other tenants about her clothing and transition," and called her transition "disruptive to the community."

After years of struggle, young Trans activist leaves Texas
NBC News reported on July 7 that 11-year-old Trans activist Kai Shappley has left Texas, after fighting against anti-Trans bills there since she was 5.

"My mom sold our home and everything that doesn't fit in our car, because the state I was born in is not safe for Trans kids," Kai said in a tweet with a photo of a garage sale sign. "Anyways... happy Independence Day to everyone who gets to celebrate that."

Kai's mother, Kimberly Shappley, made the decision after Kai testified against a bill that would have made providing Trans minors with gender-affirming care a felony. The overturning of Roe v. Wade expedited those plans.

"The damage is already being done," Shappley said. "They don't even have to take away my kids to cause them trauma. And by me staying here, I feel like I'm allowing them to continue to cause trauma to my family."

She added that she doesn't have the money to move right away, so she and her family — Kai, Kaleb, three cats, and one dog — will be selling everything and camping out of their car until they find a new home.

But when Kai's tweet went viral, people convinced Shappley to open a GoFundMe fundraiser ( Enough money came in for her to turn the move into a road trip in a motorhome.