The Marsha and Sylvia Plan and what it means for you

What the Marsha and Sylvia Plan means for LGBTQIA+ and TGNCNBI New Yorkers

What is The Marsha and Sylvia Plan?

In June 2023, the New York City Council’s LGBTQIA Caucus released The Marsha and Sylvia Plan, a guide to a more just, equitable city for LGBTQIA+ and TGNCNBI New Yorkers. The plan presents an actionable pathway forward for elected officials, both queer and allied, and for institutions like The Center. 

On Tuesday, November 28, our Advocacy team hosted a listening session discussing ways The Marsha & Sylvia Plan will ensure lawmakers understand the needs of LGBTQIA+ New Yorkers and are equipped to meet those needs across nine issue areas: Arts & Culture; Education, Government Operations; Health; Housing & Homelessness; Older Adults; Public Safety; Sex Work; and Youth & Foster Care.  

The listening session featured a roundtable discussion with Caucus members Tiffany Cabán, representing District 22, Crystal Hudson, representing District 35, and Erik Bottcher, representing District 3. Council Member Gale Brewer, who represents District 6, was also part of the panel. Trevon Mayers, The Center’s Senior Director of Advocacy & Community Engagement, provided opening remarks. 

The roundtable

During the roundtable, moderated by Ace Sutherland, Director of Organizing at Equality New York/TGNC Support Group facilitator at The Center, attendees discussed policy opportunities raised in the plans, identified new needs and issues missing from the current plan, and focused the LGBTQIA+ Caucus for the upcoming legislative session and budget process. The broad cross-section of issues raised underscores the need for comprehensive legislation to support and protect our community. The conversations and themes echoed those shared by RiseOut Members during our monthly Action Team meetings, many of whom were in attendance. 

The Center is excited to see the LGBTQIA+ Caucus of the NYC Council put forward a plan focused on addressing, in an intersectional way, the issues and needs of LGBTQIA+ New Yorkers. Every week, nearly 6,000+ people visit The Center seeking services and information, attending events, learning about queer history, or simply looking for community

We support The Caucus’ intentional focus on the most at-risk members of our community: older adults, young people, and sex workers. We support increasing funding to agencies that work directly with our community members, and we applaud the efforts taken to project that New York City, even in these precarious times, is a city where queer people can thrive. 

Our feedback

We also have some notes. We encourage the Caucus to look more deeply at how to explicitly name, raise, and address the needs of TGNC New Yorkers because, as research and community testimony show, these community members face the most significant barriers to accessing resources and are most at risk given the national discourse. We encourage the Caucus to amend the plan to better address the issues of mental health, food insecurity, economic justice and stability, and public safety, specifically as it relates to members of our community who are experiencing incarceration. 

Get involved

The Caucus will continue to seek input and feedback from community members during a series of upcoming roundtable discussions. The sessions are free to attend and will be hosted in all five boroughs. Interested attendees should complete this form.