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L.P. is a young trans woman who brought a discrimination complaint against the Philadelphia Department of Human Services and the Youth Study Center protesting the verbal and physical abuse she suffered at the hands of the Youth Study Center from 2008-2011. The successful settlement of her case resulted in significant revisions to Youth Study Center policies protecting transgender youth from experiencing similar abuse and harmful treatment at the hands of the DHS and YSC. Under these new policies the Youth Study Center must provide transgender youth with a single room on the unit that corresponds to their gender identity and must allow hormone treatment. The Youth Study Center must ensure that transgender youth are called by their preferred name and the pronoun that reflects their gender identity even if their name has not been legally changed. As a result of the settlement, the Center must also provide transgender and gender non-conforming youth access to gender appropriate clothing. The Department of Human Services also agreed to provide training for all Youth Study Center agents, providers and staff on LGBT issues.

L.P.’s resistance staked out greater safe space for transgender youth in Philadelphia’s Youth Study Center but also made a path for other local, statewide and national cases to follow.

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