Other Group

Alyssa Rodriguez Center (ARC) for Gender Justice




Fiscally-Sponsored Project


Transgender Activism


Pooja Gehi

Gabriel Arkles

EIN (Sponsee):


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The Alyssa Rodriguez Center (ARC) for Gender Justice is a non-profit that advocates for left-of-center policies regarding transgender issues, particularly those related to housing and incarceration assignments. It operates in New York, Florida, Pennsylvania, and Georgia. 1

Fiscal Sponsor

Alyssa Rodriguez Center for Gender Justice is funded through a fiscal sponsor, Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs (SEE). 2 SEE funds left-wing start-up organizations that promote left-wing climate change policies and radical cultural causes. SEE began as the American-Soviet Film Initiative in 1987 to promote cultural exchange between the U.S. and the Soviet Union through film and television. In 1994, after the fall of the Soviet Union, the name changed to SEE and the mission expanded to promote cultural exchange throughout the world, work for world peace, serve poor children, and promote environmentalist causes. 3


Alyssa Rodriguez Center for Gender Justice’s newsletter, started in July 2023, updates its membership on the organization’s opposition to laws requiring people to use the public bathroom of their natal sex, banning natal males from competing on women’s sports teams, and other initiatives it deems “anti-trans.” It also offers practical advice for transgender people to navigate a prison sentence and the legal system. 4

ARC posts regular calls to action on its website encouraging supporters to call in support for transgender people in prisons and their specific requests, including hormone therapy and gender-reassignment surgery. Many of these people are natal males who are seeking to be moved into women’s prisons, alleging harassment and abuse in men’s prisons. 5 It also encourages supporters to call their Representatives in the U.S Congress to urge support for left-wing causes ranging from a ceasefire in Gaza to increased HIV research funding. 7

After the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Danco, the manufacturer of abortion drug Mifeprex, appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse a lower court decision curbing access to abortion drugs, ARC joined Planned Parenthood and 235 other organizations in an amicus brief asking the court to keep the abortion drug widely available. 8  

ARC also signed onto a group letter opposing SB 838, a Pennsylvania bill to change the probation system. The letter called for greater firm upper limits on the length of probation, and easier ways for the formerly incarcerated to phase out of probation. Despite this opposition, Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro (D) signed SB 838 into law with the support of a bipartisan, multi-racial coalition in December 2023. 9


Alyssa Rodriguez Center for Gender Justice is named for Alyssa Rodriguez, a transgender woman from the Bronx who died in 2020 10 who had spent time in juvenile detention and prison at points in her life. While incarcerated, she successfully fought for New York juvenile jails to provide puberty blockers and cross-sex hormones. 11

Rodriguez was involved with the Sylvia Rivera Law Project, a legal aid group serving transgender people, and the Bronx Defenders, a public defense group that provides legal counsel and wraparound services for poor residents of the South Bronx. 12 13  Rodriguez was allegedly sexually assaulted twice while incarcerated in an all-male unit in Rikers Island prison and sued the City of New York for damages. In 2022, New York City paid $1.4 million to settle a lawsuit with Rodriguez’s estate. 14

Pooja Gehi is a co-founder of ARC. She was executive director of the National Lawyers Guild (NLG), a group founded in the 1930s with Communist origins and modern-day ties to Black Lives Matter, prison abolition, and Palestinian advocacy. In 2015, Gehi encouraged donors not to fund capitalism that holiday season, and contribute to NLG instead as an act of anti-capitalism. 15 She is well known in the immigrant, racial, and transgender-activist movements and worked as director of immigrant justice at the Sylvia Rivera Law Project. 16

Gabriel Arkles is also a co-founder of ARC, and an alumna of the Sylvia Rivera Law Project. Arkles is a transgender man who also worked as a senior staff attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union’s LGBT and HIV Project, where he brought numerous lawsuits challenging transgender-related laws in several states. Gabriel also sits on the Muslim Alliance for Sexual and Gender Diversity (MASGD) Steering Committee. 17

In addition to Gehi and Arkles, ARC is led by several individuals called “members”; some are currently or formerly incarcerated, some are transgender, and nearly are all involved in the prison-abolition and transgender-activist movements. 18


Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs, ARC Gender Justice’s fiscal sponsor, collected $61,280,427 in contributions in 2022 and $73,186,668 in 2021. 19

Alyssa Rodriguez Center for Gender Justice received funding from the Peace Development Fund in 2023. ARC was one of 22 organizations that received a total of $80,000 in funding that year as part of the Seeding the Movement Fund. 20

ARC also received a grant from Mary’s Pence in Fall 2023; Mary’s Pence funds small organizations that work on women’s issues and issues related to transgender and non-binary people. 21


  1. “@ARCGenderJust on Twitter…” Accessed Mar 25, 2024. https://twitter.com/ARCGenderJust
  2.  “Our Projects.” Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://saveourplanet.org/types/human-rights/
  3. Dillon Collier, Erica Hernandez, Joshua Saunders, Sean Talbot. “What we know about the Wren Collective.” KSAT. January 31, 2024. Accessed March 25, 2024. https://www.ksat.com/news/ksat-investigates/2024/01/31/what-we-know-about-the-wren-collective/
  4. ARC Quarterly. Edition 1. July 2023. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.arcgenderjustice.org/_files/ugd/b02ec6_c8b68dc4f1d44a2686b092d6e526781a.pdf?index=true
  5. Miley Selena Fletcher. “Transgender Woman in PA prison speaks out.” Workers World. August 24, 2020. Accessed March 25, 2024.  https://www.workers.org/2020/10/52043/
  6. “Action.” Alyssa Rodriguez Center for Gender Justice. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.arcgenderjustice.org/action[/note]

    ARC joined a list of left-wing groups endorsing the March on Washington for Gaza, a project sponsored by American Muslims for Palestine, the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), and other anti-Israel organizations pushing for a ceasefire in Gaza and an end to U.S. aid in Israel. 6 “What we Want.” March on Washington for Gaza. https://march4gaza.org/what-we-want/ Accessed March 22, 2024.

  7. “Brief of 237 Reproductive Health, Rights, and Justice Organizations, as Amici Curiae in Support of Petitioners.” Supreme Court of the United States, U.S. FOOD & DRUG ADMINISTRATION, ET AL., PETITIONERS, v. ALLIANCE FOR HIPPOCRATIC MEDICINE,ET AL., RESPONDENTS. ________ DANCO LABORATORIES, L.L.C., PETITIONER, v. ALLIANCE FOR HIPPOCRATIC MEDICINE,ET AL., RESPONDENTS. Nos. 23-235, 23-236. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.supremecourt.gov/DocketPDF/23/23-235/299146/20240130105347923_23-235%2023-236%20tsac%20237%20Reproductive%20Health%20Rights%20and%20Justice%20Organizations.pdf
  8. [1] Amy Howe. “Federal Government and Drug Manufacturer Ask Court to Review Ruling Restricting Access to Abortion Medication.” SCOTUSBlog. September 10, 2023. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.governor.pa.gov/newsroom/governor-shapiro-hosts-ceremonial-bill-signing-with-meek-mill-legislative-leaders-and-reform-advocates-enacting-historic-probation-reform-legislation-to-create-more-fairness-in-pennsylvania/#:~:text=It%20requires%20mandatory%20probation%20review,probation%20sentence%2C%20whichever%20is%20sooner
  9. “Home Page.” Alyssa Rodriguez Center for Gender Justice. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.arcgenderjustice.org/
  10. “Home Page.” Alyssa Rodriguez Center for Gender Justice. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.arcgenderjustice.org/
  11. “About.” Sylvia Rivera Legal Project. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://srlp.org/about/
  12. “Holistic Defense.” Bronx Defenders. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.bronxdefenders.org/holistic-defense/
  13. William J. Rold. “City of New York Pays $1.4 Million to Settle Civil Rights Claim Arising from Double Rape of Transgender Inmate on Rikers Island.” Proquest. December 2022. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.proquest.com/openview/ca28fc992ad108142f0f398585ba070c/1?pq-origsite=gscholar&cbl=5246728
  14. “Fund the Movement. Remember the NLG on #GivingTuesday!” National Lawyers Guild. December 1, 2015. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.nlg.org/fund-the-movement-remember-the-nlg-on-givingtuesday/
  15. “Pooja Gehi.” Law School Admission Council. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.lsac.org/discover-law/leaders-in-law/pooja-gehi
  16. “Home Page.” Alyssa Rodriguez Center for Gender Justice. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.arcgenderjustice.org/
  17. “Home Page.” Alyssa Rodriguez Center for Gender Justice. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.arcgenderjustice.org/
  18. Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax. Form 990. 2022. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/954116679/202313009349301646/full
  19. “Seeding the Movement Fund.” Peace Development Fund. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://www.peacedevelopmentfund.org/grants-and-programs/community-organizing-grants-program/seeding-the-movement-fund/
  20. “Mary’s Pence Announces 2023 Grantees.” Philanthropy News Digest. November 17, 2023. Accessed March 22, 2024. https://philanthropynewsdigest.org/news/other-sources/article/?id=14235931&title=Mary%E2%80%99s-Pence-Announces-Fall-2023-Grantees
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