The Obama administration is known for being friendly to the LGBTQ community. In fact, the president enacted executive orders to prevent discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity within federal agencies. But there are some who think that could all go away once Donald Trump and Mike Pence are sworn in to office.

Members of the LGBTQ community say they are concerned that the Trump administration could rollback rights and policies that are currently in place.

It's prompting Rochester's LGBTQ community to take action. Specifically, helping people change their names and their gender markers on important documents to prevent discrimination. These are documents that all of us need to get jobs, get insurance, even Social Security.

The Obama administration is known for being friendly to the LGBTQ community. In fact, the president enacted executive orders to prevent discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity within federal agencies. But there are some who think that could all go away once Donald Trump and Mike Pence are sworn in to office.

Others are worried that with new cabinet members and agency heads, regulations on Transgender people being allowed to use bathrooms for the gender they identify with, might get rolled back.

"It's not written into law, so a president could very easily say, 'Nope, not any longer,'" says Scott Fearing of the Gay Alliance, "and pull all those things back. That's why we really see this push of people really trying to get things into place."

Members of Rochester's legal community are offering their services to help Transgender people officially change their names and gender marker on all forms of identification.

"All my financial documents had to get changed, the DMV, my health insurance, my car insurance," says Rowan Collins.

Collins remembers how hard it was changing his name while a student at Nazareth College. He was worried without proper ID he would face discrimination and wouldn't get a job.

"Resumes, contact information -- all sorts of things -- because if someone's going to run a background check, it has to be your legal name," says Rowan Collins.

After the election, the Gay Alliance, Trillium Health and the Empire Justice Center banded together to offer free legal clinics and help Transgender folks get through the documentation process.

"I actually have friends who went through the clinics and being able to see their Facebook status -- it's already been approved," says Collins. "I'm legally this name and it's been three days. It's really wonderful."

Obviously, having your name changed legally won't protect you from every form of discrimination. But right now, we're told the process at the Monroe County Clerk's Office, the New York State Supreme Court, Social Security and Veterans Affairs centers -- where you sign up for benefits -- seems to be moving smoothly for Transgender folks.

They tell us they want to take advantage of every possibility while they can because no one knows what could happen under the new administration.

Links:

The Gay Alliance

Empire Justice