In Palm Springs, TCC held a fundraiser featuring trans activist Laith Ashley. (Shown here with publisher Brad Fuhr) Laith will also be the featured speaker at the TDOR at Palm Springs City Hall on Tuesday, Nov. 20. See our event listing here.
What is the Transgender Day of Remembrance?
The Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR) was started in 1999 by transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith as a vigil to honor the memory of Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was killed in 1998. The vigil commemorated all the transgender people lost to violence since Rita Hester’s death, and began an important tradition that has become the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance.
As Gwendolyn Ann Smith explains; “The Transgender Day of Remembrance seeks to highlight the losses we face due to anti-transgender bigotry and violence. I am no stranger to the need to fight for our rights, and the right to simply exist is first and foremost. 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.”
How can I participate in the Transgender Day of Remembrance?
Participate in the Transgender Day of Remembrance by attending or organizing a vigil to honor all those whose lives were lost to anti-transgender violence that year. Vigils are typically hosted by local transgender advocates or LGBTQ organizations, and held at community centers, parks, places of worship, and other venues.
The vigil often involves reading a list of the names of those who died that year. This year, GLAAD is holding an online vigil on our social channels to commemorate those that were lost.
You can visit glaad.org/tdor to learn more about the day and how to get involved.
And then throughout the year, find ways to listen to the voices of transgender people, particularly transgender women of color. If we listen to the needs and concerns of the community most affected by this violence, and amplify their voices, we can begin to create a world in which there will be no victims of anti-transgender violence.