November is Transgender Awareness Month, an opportunity to celebrate, honor, and stand up for our transgender and gender diverse communities. Transgender Awareness Month culminates each year with the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR). Each year on November 20, people everywhere pause to remember and mourn the lives lost to hate and transphobic violence.
The Transgender Day of Remembrance began here in Massachusetts in 1998 in response to the tragic unsolved murder of Rita Hester, a Black transgender woman and beloved community member, in Allston. The day is now observed in over 200 cities in 21 countries around the world, including across Massachusetts.
Unfortunately, anti-transgender violence has only risen since the first Transgender Day of Remembrance. At least 32 transgender people across the country have been murdered this year. The true number is likely much larger, as too often these stories go unreported or misreported. And each year, Black and Latinx transgender women are disproportionately affected by transphobic violence.
For trans Americans, this is a time in our country that is filled with fear and uncertainty. 155 bills aimed at restricting the lives of trans people have been proposed so far this year, with trans youth being the most frequent target of lawmakers. These include bills preventing trans girls and women from playing on female sports teams, barring trans youth from using bathrooms and locker rooms that align with their gender identity, banning on classrooms discussions about LGBTQIA+ issues, and restrictions on gender-affirming medical care for both youth and adults.
Now more than ever, our transgender and gender diverse people need support and solidarity. Please consider attending a community gathering online or in person! Here are some events happening across Massachusetts to mark Transgender Awareness Month and TDOR:
On November 14 at 6:00 PM, the Boston Public Library is hosting a “Menstruation for All” virtual info session with Love Your Menses. Menstruation is often associated with cisgendered women and this leaves people of other genders without any visibility or support. This can be a painful time physically and emotionally for TGNB, which is why this workshop will focus on how to better support their needs during their menstrual cycle. Learn more and register here.
On November 15 at 6:00 PM, Fenway Health is partnering with the Boston Public Library to host a virtual Info Session on the U.S. Trans Survey. The survey was last done in 2015 and it is so important to have updated data routinely. This session will cover what the survey entails, the importance of trans, gender diverse, and intersex data, and how to access gender-affirming health care. Learn more and register here.
Also on November 15, MTPC, Namesake, and GLAD will host a Name Change Clinic and US Trans Survey taking event at 28 Court Square in Boston at 5:30 PM. Get guidance, support, and help with your legal name and/or gender marker change. Plus, take the 2022 US Trans Survey in a secure and safe place. Sign up here.
On November 15, 16, 17, Fenway Health’s Trans Health Team will be hosting a community US Trans Survey taking event from 1:00-4:00 PM at 1340 Boylston St., 9th floor, conference room 3. Computers will be available to take the USTS, and Trans Health staff will be on hand to answer any questions. Snacks will be served.
On November 17 at 6:00 PM, the Boston Public Library is hosting Gender Affirming Identification Project, a virtual “Know Your Rights” webinar for an overview of the process for obtaining gender affirming identification. Learn more and sign up here.
The Wicked Queer Film Festival will be screening two films about transgender lives at the Museum of Fine Arts on November 19. Uýra: The Rising Forest will play at noon and A Run for More will play at 3:00 PM.
The Plymouth Public Library is hosting a Transgender Day of Remembrance Memorial on November 21 at 7:00 PM. Learn more here.
In Cape Cod, a community vigil will be held in person on Thursday, November 17 from 5:30 PM to 9:00 PM at the Unitarian Church of Barnstable, 3330 Main St. Barnstable MA. The evening will include both live and previously recorded stories of resiliency from the Cape Cod Trans Community. Click here to RSVP.