Members of GLAAD staff joined hundreds of other supporters last Friday afternoon in support of the annual Trans Day of Action. The event is hosted every year by TransJustice, a subgroup of the Audre Lorde Project.
The 8th Annual Day of Action (TDOA) began with a rally in Washington Square Park in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village, a march in the surrounding streets, and speak-outs by organizers of the project and members of the community. Some speakers celebrated the achievements that transgender and gender non-conforming people and their allies have made recently. Others encouraged the audience to mobilize and take a stance against the discrimination that they continue to experience in so many different areas of their lives. Many took the time to mourn and remember loved ones they had recently lost. Marchers chanted pleas to end hatred and discrimination towards trans people and held signs that proclaimed messages such as “Equal Protections for Trans People Now” and “Gender Justice Now.”
Events like these are an important way to bring awareness of trans issues to the broader LGB community and allies. TDOA is necessary because trans voices far too often are silenced in the media, despite experiencing discrimination at disproportionate rates. According to the 2011 National Hate Violence Report and the Injustice at Every Turn report, hate-violence against trans women of color is at an all-time high as well as overall discrimination in education, employment and in the penal system.
Earlier this month, The Daily Beast brought these issues, illustrative cases, and the media’s general disregard for them to light in a post by Jay Michaelson entitled “Media Ignores Rash of Assaults on Transgender Women.” Michaelson references the plight of CeCe McDonald, Paige Clay and Brandy Martell.
To help bring even more visibility to these issues, GLAAD has partnered with the CeCe Support Committee, Trans Youth Support Network and Trans People of Color Coalition to ask the media, LGBT community members and allies to continue to bring visibility to the everyday, harsh realities that transgender and gender non-conforming people face. CeCe McDonald is only one of the many who have been victimized, but she represents a growing need for us to do more. To find out how you can become more involved, please visit GLAAD’s page for CeCe for more information.
GLAAD thanks the Audre Lorde Project for hosting this amazing event and urges media to continue covering transgender issues in a fair, responsible way.