Many of us take others for granted and believe we are being treated as who we know we are. But so many are not only judged for who they are but harmed for living their truth.
People within the transgender community can face obstacles in relation to being accepted and supported for who they are. Fighting for equal rights and treatment in schools and workplaces, as well as recognition of their gender on government documents can be exhausting.
Beyond that is the horrible bigotry and aggression faced by the community. The International Transgender Day of Remembrance began in 1999 by advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith as a vigil for Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was murdered in 1998.
Remembering those we have lost can be challenging in the best of circumstances, however, Smith explains, “…it is vitally important that those we lose are remembered, and that we continue to fight for justice.” The Day of Remembrance is to honor all transgender people whose lives were lost due to violence rooted in bigotry, but also to challenge the indifference these crimes can face.
Many advocacy groups do have vigils to memorialize during this week, though that may look a little different due to the Covid-19 Pandemic. Many of the larger national groups are hosting virtual events/vigils this year to help keep people safe, but still pay honor to community members.
We encourage you to search for groups and resources in your area. If you are close to us in Northern Ohio, you may want to check out these organizations for any virtual events they may be hosting:
TransAlive Akron (https://sites.google.com/a/transfamily.org/transfamily/events/akron-meetings)
TransCend Canton (https://www.transcendcanton.com)
We also want to offer ourselves at Tranquility as a support resource. Our providers are here to listen and provide care and support for those within the trans community. If you have questions or want to schedule an appointment, please outreach us at 234-466-6274 or via a written message on our contact page.