Climate change disproportionately harms women, and in particular trans women and women of color, Atmos reports. “At the end of the day, the histories, the systems that have created the climate change crisis that we’re in are patriarchal systems,” Vanessa Raditz, a Ph.D. student at the University of Georgia researching the effects of disaster response on queer people, told Atmos. Women and children are 14 times more likely to die during a disaster than men, according to a 2017 UN brief, due to myriad issues including such basic inequities as the fact that women and girls have less access to education and thus may be unable to read about impending disaster and react accordingly. They’re also more at risk of sexual or physical assault when forced to travel long distances to access necessary supplies.
Exclusive policies and threats of violence prevent trans women from accessing restroom and shower facilities in disaster shelters and can be forced to accept men’s clothing, which can cause or exacerbate body dysmorphia and other mental health issues. Inequities and discrimination that trans women face “on a day-to-day basis [also] become exacerbated during a time of disaster,” Raditz said. (Atmos)