Despite the progress made to achieve rights and equality for transgender people, there is still much to do. Transgender people face hate and prejudice every day, and it is for this reason that Transgender Day of Remembrance is observed.
Why do we observe Transgender Day of Remembrance?
Every year, on the 20th of November, Transgender Day of Remembrance is held in memory of the transgender people who have been killed in the past year. Vigils are often held as part of the day. At the vigils, it is common to read out the names of the transgender people who were killed in the year. According to the Trans Respect Vs Transphobia research project, 375 transgender and gender diverse people were registered as murdered worldwide between the 1st of October 2020 and the 30th of September 2021. It is important to note that of these 375, 96% were trans women/femmes, 43% of those killed in Europe were migrants, 89% of those killed in the USA were people of colour, and 58% of those whose occupation was known were sex workers. You can find more information about the Trans Respect Vs Transphobia 2021 statistics here. You can also donate to them and help them to continue their research. Transgender Day of Remembrance was started by activists in 1999, to honour Rita Hester, who was murdered the previous year.
Transgender Day of Remembrance is a solemn and respectful day. On this day, we not only remember the transgender people who have had their lives cut tragically short, but we also consider all of the other discrimination and difficulties that transgender people regularly face.
On Transgender Day of Remembrance, we honor those we’ve lost– and we continue to fight for allGwendolyn Ann Smith, co-founder of Transgender Day of Remembrance