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Palm has response to policy

By Staff | Aug 30, 2015

“Transgender” is a relatively new term to the Blue Earth community and Faribault County as a whole. And, recently, the Blue Earth City Council has been discussing a new policy that will affect transgender community members and others.

One of those community members is 31-year-old LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender)?activist Kylie Palm, who happens to be transgender.

“Transgender is a term used to describe a person who was born as a male or female, but personally identifies as the opposing gender,” says Palm. “It depends on the person, but that’s what it means in a nutshell.”

According to the American Civil Liberties Union’s website, the terminology “transgender” can be mistaken for the term “transsexual” which means a person may be physically transitioning from one sex to another, from male to female, or female to male.

Palm, who was born a male named Kyle, says she wants to be identified as a female, and prefers to be called Kylie and referred to by the female pronouns of she and her.

Palm says that she is an active member of a 115 member group of LGBT people who meet once or twice a month in Martin County. Members and allies of the LGBT community engage in discussion, conversation, dances, and many other social events.

“We don’t have an official name,” she says,?”but everyone is welcome to come to our meetings at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church in Fairmont.”

Palm says it is important to have a safe place in the community for her and LGBT community members to go.

“Living in a community that is looking at its policies to include transgender people is uplifting, but you also have to be on the look out,” says Palm, who shared that she has had physical threats made towards her regarding her orientation. But, that is not the way she wants to feel about her hometown.

“There’s a great opportunity for our community to be more inclusive of every single type of person not just transgender people, but all people,” says Palm.

With transgender issues on the rise across the nation, Palm says it is becoming better understood.

“With so many recognizable names in the trans community, like Luverne Cox, Caitlyn Jenner, and Raffi Freedman-Gurspan (the first openly transgender staff person in the White House) it shows people that we are just that: people,” says Palm.

Palm says she has lobbied for LGBT rights, and will continue until everyone has equal opportunities and rights.

“To some, sharing a bathroom may seem like a minor issue, but to others, it is a huge deal,” Palm says

She says there are a lot of misconceptions of transgender people and hopes that this new policy helps change some of those.

“It is assumed that a lot of transgender people are criminals, stalkers, and pedophiles and that’s just not true,” says Palm. “The truth is, we are just people who want to live a normal life like everyone else.”

Blue Earth’s City Council will meet again on Sept. 8 and Palm says she will be in attendance to hear what progress has been made on the new policy.