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Celebrating International Transgender Day of Visibility and Empowering Transgender Health and Advocacy

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March 31 is International Transgender Day of Visibility (TDOV), which commemorates the achievements and resilience of transgender and gender-diverse (TGD) people around the world, including our own staff, patients, and supporters. Founded by transgender activist Rachel Crandall in 2009, TDOV is a day to reflect on progress in combatting misinformation, discrimination, and hate impacting our community.  

For Fenway Health and our Trans Health Program, it is also a time to reaffirm our commitment to providing comprehensive, compassionate healthcare and services to all members of the TGD community. We provide patient-centered, evidence-based care to ensure trans and gender-diverse people are informed and affirmed in their gender and healthcare needs. We also advocate for policies at the local, state, and national levels that protect and affirm all members of the LGBTQIA+ community, including TGD people. 

Visibility is Important 

According to the Williams Institute, there are over 1.6 million trans, non-binary, and gender-expansive youth and adults across the United States. Past research has shown that knowing a member of the LGBTQIA+ community often positively affects views of that community. Additional research by scientists affiliated with The Fenway Institute has shown that negative depictions of transgender people in the media can lead to adverse mental health outcomes among trans and gender-expansive people while positive media representations can help cisgender people better understand gender diversity.  

Trans visibility alone is not enough, though, especially in the face of increasing attacks against healthcare and public accommodations for members of the trans community, especially TGD young people. 

These efforts range from restricting any mention of sexual orientation or gender identity in classrooms to banning transgender children from participation in school sports to criminalizing access to gender-affirming care for trans and gender-diverse youth. They falsely paint the trans and queer community as dangerous to children, and attack doctors, parents, teachers, drag performers, and even young people themselves in the pursuit of cruel, dangerous legislation 

That means it is also important for people who are not part of the TGD community to be visible and vocal in their support.  

Standing in Solidarity 

International Transgender Day of Visibility is a reminder of the resilience and strength of the transgender community. It’s a celebration of progress made and a call to action for a more inclusive and equitable future. As we celebrate TDOV, we stand in solidarity with the transgender community and recommit ourselves to the ongoing fight for transgender rights and visibility. 

You can learn more about Fenway’s Trans Health Program in the TDOV episode of our podcast, Pride in Our Health, available here, Apple Podcasts, and Spotify.

Pride In Our Health Podcast Episode 2 with Steph


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