Mayor Jess Herbst
Jess Herbst is the mayor of New Hope, Texas in the United States. Jess was born with the name Jeff. She was already in the city council when she was still known as Jeff. She started hormone therapy before she was elected as mayor. When she was ready, Jess sent a message to all 600 people of New Hope to tell them she is a transgender woman and to introduce herself as Jess.

The next council meeting was amazing, says Jess. “People still treated me the same, even though I looked different. These people don’t care what I look like. They just worry about the mess in their neighbours’ garden, which I finally cleaned up when I became mayor.”


Monica Jones
Monica Jones’ story is one of the many examples of transgender people who are harassed by the police. In Arizona, the police thinks that every black transgender woman is a prostitute.

In May of 2013, Monica walked back from Arizona State University, where she was a student, to go to a bar. She was approached by two men who offered her a ride and Monica got in their car. Once she was in the car, it became clear that they thought Monica was a prostitute. Monica said she was not multiple times, but the two men – who were undercover police officers – still arrested her. She was put in jail for 15 days and was later convicted of prostitution in a court room.

Campaigns were held all over the world with the slogan “We Stand With Monica”.

Beth Brooke
Beth Brooke is a director of Ernst & Young (EY), which has offices in 150 countries and over 200,000 employees. She was open about her homosexuality in a film for and about young LGBT+ people as part of the EY campaign “It Gets Better”.

Margriet van der Linden, presenter of the Dutch TV programme “How To Be Gay”, talked to her:

Translation of the title: How Beth Brooke from Ernst & Young came out
Please note: the film is in Dutch; click here for a transcription in English.

4) New Hope is a conservative town in Texas. When Jess transitioned, no one seemed to care. Explain why that might be.
5) The pamphlet for “We Stand With Monica Jones” also says “stop profiling trans women of colour”. What does profiling mean and why are people against it?
6) How can the “It Gets Better” campaign help LGBT+ people and how does EY profit from it?