UBC study finds transgender youth who are sexually active have similar pregnancy rates as non-trans peers

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      A new research paper indicates that transgender youth are not at less risk of becoming pregnant.

      The lead author of the study, Jamie Veale, said in a UBC news release that while people "often assume that trans youth don't get pregnant or get someone pregnant", this isn't the case.

      In fact, five percent of a subset of 540 youth between 14 and 25 years old and who had been sexually active were involved in at least one pregnancy.

      “There were no differences in hormone use and living in their felt gender between youth who had experienced pregnancy and those who hadn’t,” Veale said. “In other words, there is no evidence to support assumptions that pregnancy only occurs in those who are yet to transition.”

      Veale was on a postdoctoral fellowship at UBC when she led the research, which was published in the International Journal of Transgenderism. She's now a lecturer at the University of Waikato in New Zealand.

      UBC nursing professor Elizabeth Saewyc—the research paper's senior author—said in the UBC news release that the data point to the need for more "supportive sex education and sexual health care" for trans youth.

      “Clinicians should ask trans or nonbinary youth about their sexual health and behaviours,” Saewyc said. “They should ensure this group know how to protect themselves from unintended pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections.”

      UBC nursing professor Elizabeth Saewyc says the research suggests a need for more supportive sex education and sexual health care for trans youth.

      Meanwhile, a new poll released by the Angus Reid Institute shows wide-ranging support for trans rights in Canada.

      It showed that 84 percent of respondents supported the federal government adding gender identity to the list of prohibited grounds for discrimination under the Canadian Human Rights Act.

      The same poll indicated that 58 percent say trans people should be allowed to use the washroom of their choice.

      Recently, the Vancouver Public Library began posting signs on its men's and women's washrooms saying that trans people are welcome to use them.