Date of Award

January 2016

Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


School of Public Health

First Advisor

Danya E. Keene


A wealth of literature explains the existence of barriers to accessible housing for the trans community. However, none have elucidated the story of how young trans women manage and navigate these barriers as they experience finding not only a housing structure, but also a place to call home. The aim of this work is to describe the experience finding home for a group of young, trans, women of color. This is done via qualitative analysis of semi-structured interviews of 17 trans women associated with the Ruth Ellis Center in Detroit, Michigan. Utilizing a grounded theory approach and coding with Dedoose software, data explored how the experience of finding home is shaped by (1) conceptualizing home as a place that will allows space to express one’s gender, (2) the role social support plays in the establishment of home, (3) motivations to escape discrimination, and (4) the ability to assert bodily autonomy. These four themes suggest that home is distinct from housing and provide critical insight for successful home-establishment programs and initiatives in the future.


This is an Open Access Thesis.

Open Access

This Article is Open Access