Transgender Day of Remembrance has its roots in memorializing Rita Hester, a trans woman of color who was killed in 1998 in Massachusetts. Across the U.S. and internationally, communities gather on November 20th for candlelight vigils, reading the names of those lost to transphobia and hatred in the prior year, and to hold events to raise awareness and bring attention to ongoing violence against transgender people and communities. The Transgender Day of Remembrance allows us all an opportunity to honor those lost, and to show love and respect for our sisters and brothers.
While the Transgender Day of Remembrance is honored both in the U.S. and around the globe, since 2007, October 20th has been recognized as the International Day of Action Against Trans Depathologization. This year, activists in over 50 cities held simultaneous demonstrations and events to demand No state or psychiatric intervention, I am the only one who rules my body! Our grantee partners Organization of Transsexuals for the Dignity of Diversity (OTD) in Chile, Aireana in Paraguay, and Colombia Diversa in Colombia were amongst the 80 organizations worldwide commemorating the International Day of Action Against Trans Depathologization.
In concert with the theme of Trans Depathologization, OTD also organized the 5th annual Trans and Intersex Human Rights and Health Rights seminar on October 16th, bringing together ministry of health representatives, the public health sector, and members of the LGBTQI community. The seminar included a talk by a doctor and trans ally on the latest procedures used in Chile and Latin America, a photography exhibit, and a personal presentation of an OTD member. Dr. Luis Castillo Fuenzalida was honored for his advocacy and commitment to providing respectful and dignified health standards to the trans community. As a result of OTDs work and almost 2 years of direct advocacy, a new medical protocol was approved this past November 11th, 2012 that was designed taking into account the demands of the trans community. Under this medical protocol, trans people who want to legally change their names or legal markers will no longer have to undergo humiliating, transphobic, and discriminatory physical examinations in Chile.
To find Transgender Day of Remembrance events in your community, visit the International Transgender Day of Remembrance website .
If you are in New York, join our grantee partner Audre Lorde Project for their Transgender Day of Remembrance Ceremony:
Audre Lorde Project – TransJustice Transgender Day of Remembrance Ceremony
Tuesday, November 20th, 6:30 to 9:30 pm
Audre Lorde Project Office
147 West 24th Street, 3rd Floor
To learn more about International Day of Action Against Trans Depathologization, visit Stop Trans Pathologization.