By: Nicole Lashomb*/TRT Editor-in-Chief–
Recently, Brown University, located in Providence Rhode Island, announced that its renewed student insurance policy would include coverage for gender reassignment surgery. When this significant information came to my attention, I was compelled to assign a reporter to cover such a historic decision by the Ivy League University. I was in disbelief at what my reporter encountered.
After numerous attempts to reach many University officials, only one finally responded to our reporter’s outreach. In lieu of answering a series relevant of questions of LGBT interest, the News & Communications Director responded with six generic sentences that had already been dispersed several times to various outlets. Despite our reporter’s documented insistence to receive more information from the Director, she was told that they couldn’t help us. How is it possible that such a forward thinking University, as demonstrated by its policies, refused to provide any other information to one of New England’s few LGBTQ publications to better inform our diverse readers about a topic that directly impacts our community?
I would still like to extend to Brown officials the invitation to appropriately respond to our queries, address our community in the way it deserves and express leadership not merely by its Ivy League status and policy implementation but by effective communication by the “powers that be.”
* Nicole Lashomb is the Editor-in-Chief of The Rainbow Times. She holds a bachelor’s from SUNY Potsdam and an MBA from Marylhurst University. You can e-mail her at: firstname.lastname@example.org.