November 20, 2021 marks Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDoR), an important time to honor the memory of the lives that have been taken by anti-transgender violence throughout the years.
About Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDoR)
TDoR began as a vigil in 1999 to honor the memory of Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was killed in 1998. Since then, TDoR has grown into an annual observance, recognized by organizations like Family Equality as well as advocates and community members around the world.
Of TDoR, founder and transgender advocate, Gwendolyn Ann Smith, says:
“With so many seeking to erase transgender people—sometimes in the most brutal ways possible—it is vitally important that those we lose are remembered, and that we continue to fight for justice.”
On this day, we take the time to honor those we have lost this year. To that end, this year we share a resource from our friends at TGEU: a worldwide list of trans and nonbinary people whose lives were taken by violence. Click here to see the full list.
We encourage you to join us in this observance by participating in TDoR vigils, whether virtual or in-person.
Committing to this Work
Far too often, violence against this community goes unreported, unnoticed, or misrepresented in the media. This is especially true for transgender women of color, specifically Black and Latinx transgender women, who are disproportionately affected by fatal violence. According to Transrespect versus Transphobia Worldwide (TvT)’s update of Trans Murder Monitoring (TMM), 2021 is set to be the deadliest year for trans and gender-diverse people, with 375 registered murders across the globe between October 2020 and September 2021. Of the reported killings worldwide, sex workers make up the majority of the victims.
Today is a reminder that we must remain committed to trans inclusion in all levels of our work. We must provide support to our trans and gender-diverse family and friends. We must double down on our work to educate decision-makers, media, and people who have the power to shape our day-to-day lives to ensure that they are equipped to treat this community with dignity, respect, and excellence. And, we must advocate in all levels of the government for policies and practices that protect the lived and legal equality of trans folks and families.
Taking Concrete Action
We need to mobilize to counter the anti-trans violence that permeates our world every day. If you are an ally, you can commit to donating to organizations that focus on trans people who are BIPOC, sex workers, and/or asylum seekers/refugees.
The following organizations are also doing some amazing, hard, dedicated work in this area. If you’re in need of help, want to learn more, or are looking for missions to support, check out this list:
- Anti-Violence Project
- International Transgender Day of Remembrance
- National Center for Transgender Equality
- Sylvia Rivera Law Project
- Trans Women of Color Collective
- Transgender Europe’s Trans Murder Monitoring Project
- Transgender Law Center
- TransJustice at the Audre Lorde Project
Find Community & Support
Next week, on November 24, we’re hosting another biweekly Trans, Nonbinary, and Gender Nonconforming Peer Support space for parents and caregivers to connect and find support. To RSVP, click here.