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Any change in employer/recruiter accepting m2f

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I transitioned at 21, worked a little bit as an office worker since, getting & keeping work very hard most companies didn't accept me. So I'm in my late 30s now, last looked over 10 years ago, but despite my office work skills spent most my life on benefits. Has much changed? My indications so far are it has not. It affected me a lot & was very traumatic. The thought of interviewing, if I was lucky to get that far with a life mostly on welfare, is frightening. I'm somewhat passable but not highly passable. Help!
asked Sep 30, 2011 in Employment by anonymous

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7 Answers

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Hi there

Yes, things have improved. A trans woman is now in Victoria Police and won a bravery award for acvtions in the Black Saturday bushfires. A trans woman is in the Metro Fire Brigade. They are both doing fine. If they can suceed in what are very masculine enviroments, this clearly contrasts to 10 years ago when there were severe workplace assualts etc.

Re interviewing, a good job network agency should be able to help here. I personally reccomend WISE employment, although check out ZBGC's database and links at transgendervictoria.com for all options

Whatever the career is that you've wanted, at least give it a shot.  It is your birthright to have a happy career (among other things) and being trans does not alter that birthright.


answered Oct 1, 2011 by sallyg (560 points)
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Welcome to ZBGC's Questions and Answers website. We're really sorry to hear you've had such a hard time on the employment front. 

If you're comfortable with this, feel free to mention what state/territory you're in, as it may help others in responding to your question. Our Resources Directory (which Sally referred to in her answer) currently doesn't list very much in the way of employment-related resources, but there are 3 listings. If you're in Victoria, the TransGender Victoria website (which Sally also recommended) does contain 2 resources. If you're in NSW, perhaps The Gender Centre might be able to advise you. 

We hope you find the answers to your question to be of use. We are hopeful that more answers will be coming.  

PS You're always welcome to advertise your skills on our community Noticeboard.

answered Oct 1, 2011 by zbgc-qa-admin (8,150 points)
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Hi there

Something you might like to consider is that a psychiatric diagnosis of GID would entitle you to special help with finding employment for people with a disability.  Please be clear, I do not consider GID a disability!  I'm just saying that you could be entitled to special assistance, and there also might be incentives for employers to take you on.  So you might like to check this out with Centrelink and/or job network providers.

Good luck!

answered Oct 1, 2011 by anonymous
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I'm a transguy so I can't talk from a MTF perspective but I thought I'd contribute too, if that's OK. I think it's a definite sign of progress that a trans woman can have the support of an employer like the fire brigade or police.

In general, I think it does depend a lot on who you work for. I worked for a community organisation while I was transitioning. There is such a diversity of people at that organisation (staff and especially clients) that even though I was probably the only trans staff member they'd ever had my transition was barely an issue.

I agree with sallyg that it's worth a shot to pursue the career that you want. Whatever happens, best of luck.

PS I know you weren't asking for advice on getting a job but I thought I'd add that maybe you might enjoy doing some volunteer work for a community organisation if you haven't tried that before. I can't vouch for the transfriendliness of all community organisations but I think there will definitely be some that will be transfriendly. I once volunteered at a community organisation and got offered a job through that, and it also is useful to put on the CV.
answered Oct 11, 2011 by anonymous
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I'll be honest, I'm 24 so reminiscing on how difficult it was to get and keep work ten years ago would seem quite flippant. However I moved to Melbourne at the beginning of my transition and I can guarantee that I was not a looker, I turned heads but not in the way I dreamed ;-) However on the job front it seemed quite easy to gain employ. I will admit that I sent out over 150 job applications in my first two weeks down here but that was more because I treated my time unemployed as a job so I sat down from 9 - 5 and worked on getting a job. Not many of them got call backs, that may have something to do with the fact that the cover letters on all of the applications contained a paragraph that explained the situation, mostly because of the logic that if someone doesn't want me working there then I don't want to work for them... After two weeks I had a couple of interviews which went quite well and the transgender issue had been taken off the table by the cover letter, if there was an issue with it I wouldn't be asked to interview I assume... I quickly took one of the jobs and was working on the third week... Since working there have been very few issues and none of them have been from my bosses. Although having observed and compared other people's experiences I might offer a couple of suggestions for action items that can be very helpful when followed: - be upfront and honest with your boss but not confrontational - allow questions, I've watched a great number of transitioning people get upset because someone has asked a question they feel crosses the line. People fear what they don't understand, don't get upset and push them away, explain it to them and bring them on your side - don't think of it as an issue yourself, I found personally when I put it from my mind everything went a lot smoother - strive to be the best at your job - this should go without saying but high achievers are always in high demand - consider working for a bigger company, they have a much stricter anti discrimination policy - sometimes it can be helpful to be in a non customer facing job, especially if you're not passing excellently I hope this helps and good luck!!!
answered Dec 29, 2011 by anonymous
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As the "First offical Transgender woman in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF)" I can say it has been hard, but if you believe in yourself and have the strength to stand up for your rights then you can make the world your castle. Im always happy to help and share if wanted so please dont feel you are alone, life and love are never as far away as sometimes seems! Amy.
answered Jan 1, 2012 by anonymous
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We have the Equal Oppurtunity Law and Discrimination Act that should protect us in the work place right? Job searching is generally difficult on it's own as a task unfortunately. I hear IBM and Westpac are friendly companies
answered Jan 11, 2012 by anonymous