Promoting Social Justice and Equity for Sexual and Gender Diverse Communities

The Wayne State University School of Social Work is proud to launch our 2023-2024 community series, "Promoting Social Justice and Equity for Sexual and Gender Diverse Communities". This series is designed to help social workers, students, faculty, staff, and community members develop a critically conscious awareness regarding the lived experiences of transgender and gender diverse individuals. We encourage all to join us for this three-part series of open, respectful, and enlightening conversations. Social Work continuing education credits will be offered at each event. 

Event #1: Health Equity and Access in Transgender Communities in a Time of Changing Policies

Thursday, October 26, 2023 from 3:30 - 5:00 pm EST

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The first event in this series, our annual Edith Harris Endowed Memorial Lecture, was a discussion of health equity and access in Detroit’s transgender communities. We will be examining the changing landscape for health access for transgender communities in the U.S. and discussing innovations in health care organizations working to serve the needs of these communities.

Panelists included: Julisa Abad is the Director of Transgender Outreach and Advocacy at Fair MichiganRachel Crandall-Crocker, LMSW, Executive Director and Co-founder of Transgender MichiganLayton “Mykell” Price, CDE, CDP, CDR, Director of Talent, Equity, and Inclusion at the Ruth Ellis Center; and Emme Zanotti, Director of Advocacy & Civic Engagement at Equality Michigan, served as moderator at this event.

Event #2: Embracing Diverse Perspectives and Addressing Sexual Fluidity

Thursday, March 7, 2024 from 3:30 - 5:00 pm EST

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The second event in this series will explore the student perspective, in an effort to help those working with members within the LGBTQIA+ community to "Embracing Diverse Perspectives and Addressing Sexual Fluidity", when creating policies and/or programming for sexual and gender diverse individuals. 

Panelists included: WSU Engineering Computer Science student Thomas Charnley; WSU Masters of Occupational Therapy student Megan Hofman; WSU Social Work student Amanda Mies; Unified Outreach Specialist Mister Whitfield; and WSU College of Education - Counseling Psychology Doctoral Candidate Gabriel DeLong will serve as moderator.

Event #3: Legislative Milestones: Understanding LBGTQ+ inclusive policies, exploring anti-discrimination laws, and empowering LBGTQ+ communities

Thursday, April 4, 2024
3:30 - 5:00 pm EST

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The goal of this last and final iteration of this series, "Legislative Milestones: Understanding LBGTQ+ inclusive policies, exploring anti-discrimination laws, and empowering LBGTQ+ communities" is to explore areas within the legislative landscape surrounding issues pertinent to the LGBTQ+ community. Drawing on their various and accumulated years of social justice advocacy and work, this session will explore some of the previous historical precedents, current debates, and future thinkings that impact the nuanced complexities inherent in the legislative efforts and processes that are working to create an equitable and inclusive community for sexual and gender diverse individuals.

Logan Casey


Logan Casey, PhD (he/him) the Director of Policy Research for the Movement Advancement Project (MAP), an independent think tank that provides rigorous research, insight, and analysis to help speed equality for all, including LGBTQ people. Among other duties, he maintains Equality Maps tracking over 50 LGBTQ-related policies across all 50 states, D.C., and the U.S. territories. Casey creates accessible, persuasive, data-driven policy resources, and advises on these and other issues. Casey earned his PhD in Political Science from the University of Michigan in 2016. His research focused on political psychology, particularly emotions and LGBTQ politics. 

Dallas Duncar


Dallas Ducar, MSN, APRN (she/her) is the Chief Executive Officer of Transhealth. In addition, Dallas is on faculty at Northeastern University, University of Virginia School of Medicine, University of Virginia School of Nursing, Columbia University, and the MGH Institute for Health Professions. She serves as the Vice-Chair of the Primary Care Alliance, is on the LGBTQI Federal Policy Roundtable, and is a member of the Board of Directors of Healing Our Community Collaborative. She has advised international research groups on best practices, carried out community-based participatory action research programs, and advocates for gender-affirming care nationally. Dallas has helped advise local, regional, and national elected leaders in best practices and policies for gender-affirming health care, including advocating for protections for providers, and continues to push the needle of justice forward daily.

Jey'nce Poindexter


Jey’nce Poindexter (she/her) is a Case Manager at the Ruth Ellis Center. Poindexter a bold and committed community leader in Detroit, Michigan who is dedicated to social justice and being an agent for change. Poindexter fights for equal opportunity and justice while also providing support for other transgender women of color. She is also very dedicated to her faith and says that God has carried her on this journey. Poindexter is also the vice president of the Trans Sistas of Color Project and co-chair of Fear and Equal Michigan Initiative. As one of the primary organizers for the Women’s March in Michigan, Poindexter is actively engaged in political outreach, meeting and consulting with politicians like Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, Beto O’Rourke and Cory Booker to advocate for the LBGTQ+ community and equal opportunity. Poindexter was a part of a team of Michigan leaders who helped advocate for State officials to introduce legislation to ban discrimination based on sexual orientation and sexual identity. She is also the iconic house mother of the House of Mizrahi, one of the most respected international ballroom houses among communities of color. 

Jerron Totten


Jerron Totten (he/him) is a Social Justice Engineer at LGBT Detroit. Additionally, Totten oversees philanthropy for LBGT Detroit, supporting their mission is to activate, amplify, and sustain LGBT+ culture, education, advocacy, and human rights. A native of Reidsville, North Carolina, Totten came to LGBT Detroit with over five years of political and community organizing experience. Totten counts himself to be a fortunate product of every human he has encountered. Raised by his heroic mother, father, extended family and community, family never passed up the opportunity to pour into him. Jerron would go on to be afforded opportunities not typical for a gay, African American man in his own hometown. Totten will serve as the moderator for this panel.