This episode entitled 'Just A Friend from the fourth season of 'The Jeffersons' was groundbreaking in many respects. It's the first time that an African descended transwoman character was shown on TV who didn't fit the stereotypes we all know and loathe.
It was also broadcast in 1977.
While I didn't care for the part where he tried to pass off Leroy as Edie, for the most part the episode is on point. You also have to remember at the time 'The Jeffersons' was a Top 10 rated show that many African-American homes watched.
So if they weren't aware of the trans issue affecting African descended people, they were after that broadcast.