Transgender community to remember the fallen
An official function inside NSW Parliament will help mark this year’s Transgender Day of Remembrance which will be held for the fourteenth time next Tuesday to commemorate the lives of those lost or curtailed simply for being transgendered.
The event inside Parliament’s Macquarie Room will also see Deputy Lord Mayor of Sydney, Robyn Kemmis, launch the Transgender Anti-Violence Project report, which has been developed by the City of Sydney, the Inner City Legal Centre, the NSW Police Force and the NSW Gender Centre.
Largely funded by the City of Sydney the project saw statistics of assault and intimidation experienced by trans people in Sydney compiled for the first time in an orderly fashion while a poster and publicity campaign was also launched to encourag trans people to report violence, with the promise that they would be treated with respect by members of the police.
Sponsored by members of the Labor Party, the Coalition and the Greens, it is expected a number of MPs will be present at the function alongside the likes of NSW Police chief superintendent Donna Adney.
Katherine Cummings, from the Gender Centre, told SX that Transgender Day of Remembrance will be commemorated this year across the world with candle-lit vigils, meetings with spoken tributes, street marches and “a determination to change the future”.
“It is the day on which transgendered people remember those who have been the victims of hate crimes, crimes based on transphobia and ignorance, crimes based on brutality and misunderstanding. Crimes based on wilful stupidity,” she said.
“The Transgender Day of Remembrance should be left to memorialise our dead rather than having it turned into a one-size-fits-all recognition of injustice. There is plenty of injustice to go around and plenty of days to resist it. The 20th day of November is different and special.”
The National LGBTI Health Alliance and depression initiative Beyondblue have also given their support for the day and related events.
“It is a time of sadness, grief and loss,” Health Alliance general manager Warren Talbot told SX. “We also remember those who have died as a result of suicide.
“The Day is call for all – individuals, organisations and governments – to make a new commitment to access to health and social services for transgender people.”
The Health Alliance will be releasing the recommendations of Australia’s first report into the health of people of diverse sex and genders (DSG) at Parliament House a week later on November 27.
Beyondblue CEO Cate Karnell told SX that research by her organisation had shown that discrimination was a major contributing factor to depression and anxiety, and risk of suicide.
“It is terrible that anyone would be discriminated against for simply being themselves when their lifestyle causes no harm to others,” she said.
“We hope important memorial days such as Trans Day of Remembrance will help end hateful bullying by raising awareness and understanding about the trans population and teach others that discrimination can cause enormous harm.”
Meanwhile, filmmaker Andrew Guy, a trans man, will also use Transgender Day of Remembrance to launch an official trailer and fundraising campaign for his forthcoming documentary It’s Not About The Sex which will shine a light on trans issues by following his own journey of transitioning gender.
- Tags: Andrew Guy, Beyondblue, Blaze, City of Sydney, Coalition, Commemoration, Discrimination, Donna Adney, Event, Function, Gender Centre, Greens, I'ts Not About The Sex, Inner City Legal Centre, Katherine Cummings, Labor Party, LGBTI Community, MCV, National LGBTI Health Alliance, NSW Parliament House, NSW Police, Queensland Pride, Robyn Kemmis, SX, Transgender, Transgender Day of Remembrance, Warren Talbot