Activist community

How our community can support our transgender and non-binary youth

North Jersey Pride is hosting a talk on June 8 to answer questions we all have

Do you want to support your child in a gender-wide way, but you are not sure how? Are you confused by the terminology? Do you have questions about gender transition, but you don’t know who to contact?

Attend a free educational panel, sponsored by Pride of North Jersey, for a candid discussion on how to better understand and support transgender, non-binary, and gender-broad youth at Columbia High School’s Black Box Theater on Wednesday, June 8 at 6 p.m. The panel will also be broadcast live for those who cannot come in person.

The discussion will feature experts in the field as well as parents and young people who have experienced the journey and will share their experience and wisdom.

The panel includes:

Dr. Eunice Avilés (she/she), a trans and human rights advocate, educator and political influencer informed by over 15 years of clinical practice with a wide variety of trans, gender diverse and queer people throughout life.

Celeste Fiore (they/them), partner at Argentino Fiore Law & Advocacy as well as an LGBTQ educator, activist and one of the very few non-binary legal professionals.

Dr. Carol Irving (her), director of clinical services for the Atlantic Health System and an outspoken advocate for the trans community since her son came out as transgender seven years ago.

Amy Cox-Martins (her), registered social worker for 31 years, with specific training certificates in psychoanalytic psychotherapy, transgender mental and physical health and EMDR.

JP Pedoto, LSW (he/him), a proud transman and program coordinator and clinician for Family Connections’ Pride+, a program that provides a safe space for middle and high school-aged youth who identify with the LGBTQ community.

Amanda Simpson, MSW (she/them), a social worker who provides counseling to LGBTQ youth, most recently with NJCRI, and HMI-NJ before that.

Jane Buchanan (her), international human rights defender, investigator, trainer and proud mother of a 15-year-old trans son.

Jahki Easterling (he/him), an entrepreneur living in East Orange, who would like to share more about his journey.

Ellie Munro, high school student, South Orange

Landen Griola, High School Freshman, West Orange

Moderator: Tara Benigno, LSW (her), a proud clinician in private practice and the Clinical Supervisor of the Short-Term Inpatient Adult Psychiatric Unit at Trinitas RWJ Barnabas Health.

The panel will take place at the Black Box Theater at Columbia High School, 17 Parker Ave., Maplewood and there is no charge to attend in person. You can also stream live: