A transgender-led research group is working on what they hope will be the largest single-population data set collected on trans people, to date.
The Chicago Area Trans Survey will collect information from individuals in Cook County. Researchers say they hope to create a comprehensive set of data that will range from individuals’ health care experiences to political goals.
“We’re really trying to not just tell stories of trans pain, but also tell stories of trans joy,” said Dylan Felt, a research project coordinator for the Evaluation, Data Integration and Technical Assistance program at Northwestern University. “We really want this to be a survey that reflects the full breadth of trans experience—not just victimization, but profound moments of happiness, joy, family and community.”
The project, launched by Northwestern University and Brave Space Alliance, plans to start collecting data in summer 2022. They have a goal of sharing the results by the end of 2022.
Researchers are taking a grassroots approach to collecting data, said Jae Rice, the director of communications at Brave Space Alliance. One way is by having the survey available at BSA-sponsored events. What’s important is that the survey is by trans people, for trans people, he added.
“It’s very important that things like research and data collection is done by the trans community because we know the community,” Rice said. “There’s no one that can tell us better about our community than us.”
To stay up to data with the survey, you can watch announcements from Brave Space Alliance.