Thank you to everyone who has supported the effort to help pay the fees and bond needed to get Meagan out of jail. If you would like to donate to Welcome to support our other work with LGBTQ homeless individuals you are welcome to use the donate button above.
Now that Meagan is Free if you would like to provide her with additional funds or support, please contact her directly.
Funds raised and designated to Welcome to "Free Meagan": $4,719
$955 in additional undesignated donations to Welcome between 6/21 and 7/23 were approved by the Welcome Board to cover additional fees (if needed) and to ensure that Meagan is able to legally change her name and get a new ID. We apologize for not being clearer about this earlier, but our priority was Meagan's privacy, getting Meagan out of jail and ensuring that she was able to make her own decisions without pressure. Donations will not be deposited in to Welcome's bank account until 8/13/2015.
Total Funds expended to date: $5,381
Final Expense Accounting:
- $88 in web conferencing fees with Meagan in jail
- $2,276 wired funds to pay Meagan's bond at the Polk County Jail ($2,100 of this will be returned after Meagan appears in court or the charges are dropped)
- $1,825 wired funds to Meagan's family that paid her fees in Illinois
- $646 funds wired to Meagan in Iowa
- $546 Instead of actual expenses for name change and ID fees, Meagan has opted to receive $500 to get the money in advance.
Meagan Taylor was the only individual making decisions about how funds were expended. Welcome did not reimburse or accept requests for unsolicited reimbursement. We were saddened that so many strangers, expected funds raised to pay for Meagan Taylor's legal, would be distributed to them.
* Notice that has been on this donation page, since start of the campaign: Welcome is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Your donation will be acknowledged with a letter for your tax records. We are committed to paying Meagan's fees. Any remaining donations raised above the actual cost of fees will be used to support LGBTQ homeless youth and transgender individuals living in poverty. Meagan has requested that we pay it forward to other people in need.
Meagan Taylor was arrested in Des Moines because she was transgender and it upset hotel staff. She is currently being held in Polk County Jail with a $2,000 bail amount. You can learn more about the case here: http://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/opinion/columnists/rekha-basu/2015/07/16/arrested-transgender-sex-inmate-tests-jailers/30269945/
We don't know all the information about Meagan's story, nor do we wait to help people until we learn all the details of their past. Poverty is complicated and no one is perfect. Deeply rooted in faith, we believe that all people deserve another chance. If you agree, we hope you will help raise attention to this issue.
While not homeless, Meagan's story is familiar to us. At Welcome, we have traveled the country to document the stories of LGBTQ homeless youth. And the affects of laws targeting homeless youth and LGBT individuals of color.
Here is a video from New York to learn more about some of the issues that Meagan is experiencing.