Chicago House opens nation's first transgender housing July 17, 2013
Chicago, IL — On Monday, Chicago House cut the ribbon on the TransLife Center (TLC), a first in the nation facility for members of the transgender community, located in Chicago's Edgewater neighborhood.
The non-profit organization said it hopes to offer full wrap-around services to members of Chicago's transgender community, which includes housing, health and employment servicecs, in a discrimination-free space.
"This will set a new model and a new standard for other cities," said Chicago House CEO, Rev. Stan J. Sloan during the morning ceremony.
The ribbon was cut by Stormie Williams, the first resident of the house, which includes nine bedrooms.
Transgender Hollywood producer and Chicago native Lana Wachowski (The Matrix, V for Vendetta, Cloud Atlas) was joined by Mara Keisling, executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality for the ceremony held outside the new facility.
A number of other dignitaries and elected officials also attended, including Book of Mormon's Jake Emmerling, Entertainer/Entrepreneur Kinley Preston of ChicagoPride.com, state Reps. Kelly Cassidy (D-Chicago) and Greg Harris (D-Chicago), state Sen. Heather Steans (D-Chicago), U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-9th), Alds. Harry Osterman (48th) and James Cappleman (46th), and Mona Noriega, director of the Chicago Commission on Human Relations.
Sloan and TransLife Center Director, Bonn Wade, provided a tour of the new facility, which was funded by Alphawood Foundation Chicago and multiple corporate and private donors. TLC was wholly designed with time, materials and furnishing donations by Designs for Dignity.
Located in a former AIDS hospice operated by Chicago House, TLC's exact location is being kept private to protect its occupants.