As part of Suffolk University’s LGBT History Month, the office of Diversity Services and the Center for Women’s Health and Human Rights sponsored a two day Transgender Health and Wellness series for the Suffolk community. The program, which ran from October 24-25, featured three presentations by Samuel Lurie, a FTM (female to male) transgendered public speaker.
Lurie presented on issues of tolerance and access to resources for those who are transgendered, and offered basic guidelines for being a “trans ally” within the greater community. He advised students, faculty and staff, “Don’t make assumptions about a trans person’s sexual orientation, don’t assume what path a transperson is on regarding surgery or hormones, and if you don’t know what pronouns to use, ask.”
Lurie praised Suffolk University for its thorough non-discrimination policy, which specifies that the University does not discriminate on the basis of gender identity or gender expression "in its employment, admission policies, or in the administration or operation of, or access to its academic and non-academic programs and policies." He explained that Suffolk University's policy is one of the few non-discrimination policies that exists in a university setting that so explicitly outlines the dedication to equal access for all.
He also outlined how Suffolk University students and staff could improve the campus climate by increasing safety and tolerance for all people on campus by reaching out to "cross collaborate" with the many groups on campus working on inclusion and diversity issues.
Samuel Lurie has been speaking publicly and offering training for the past 9 years and has presented lectures to more than16,000 people in 28 states. He lives in Washington, DC and founded Transgender Training and Advocacy, which teaches clinicians and service providers about the needs of transgender people.