Transgender Awareness Week

Each year between November 13 – 19, people and organizations around the country participate in Transgender Awareness Week to help raise the visibility about transgender people and address issues members of the community face.

The week before Transgender Day of Remembrance on November 20, people and organizations around the country participate in Transgender Awareness Week to help raise the visibility of transgender people and address issues members of the community face.

Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR), is an annual observance on November 20 that honors the memory of the transgender people whose lives were lost in acts of anti-transgender violence that year. 

Read more about Transgender Awareness Week (Semana de Concientización Transgénero en espagnol) and Transgender Day of Remembrance below, and find out how you can participate.

What is Transgender Awareness Week?

Transgender Awareness Week is a week when transgender people and their allies take action to bring attention to the community by educating the public about who transgender people are, sharing stories and experiences, and advancing advocacy around issues of prejudice, discrimination, and violence that affect the transgender community.

What is Transgender Day of Remembrance?

Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR) was founded by transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith as a vigil to honor Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was killed in 1998. The vigil commemorated all the transgender people lost to violence that year and began the world-wide observance that has become the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance.

Participate in TDOR by attending or organizing a vigil on November 20 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. 

What is the current cultural context for transgender people?

According to a 2021 Gallup poll, 68% Americans believe they have never personally met anyone who is transgender. That means the majority of the public's education and awareness about transgender people has been informed by more than a century's worth of media which has overwhelmingly misrepresented and mischaracterized who trans people are--significantly influencing public perceptions, policy, and attitudes about the trans community. 

GLAAD encourages everyone to watch the documentary DISCLOSURE on Netflix and check out the associated toolkits created to supplement the film.The feature, from director Sam Feder and executive producer Laverne Cox, explores the history of trans representation in TV and film, revealing how Hollywood simultaneously reflects and manufactures people's deepest anxieties about gender.

DISCLOSURE Toolkit for Entertainment Industry Professionals

DISCLOSURE invites viewers to see the dynamic interplay between trans representation on screen, the resulting cultural attitudes off-screen, and real-world consequences of these inauthentic, stereotypical depictions on the lives of real trans people as told by the 30 trans people interviewed for the film. 

For trans people and our allies, DISCLOSURE is an important survey of how the media has treated trans people, with a call-to-action to better understand and support the community--on screen and off.

In the same Gallup poll where nearly 70% of all American say they don't personally know a transgender person, responses show that 50% of Americans under the age of 30 report knowing someone transgender. Younger people are much more likely to have friends and family members who are transgender. This is consistent with multiple surveys finding that more than 20% of Gen Z say they are part of the LGBTQ community. Younger people are much more likely to be LGBTQ and much more likely to have personal relationships with transgender people.

As the visibility of transgender people has become more authentic, and as more people have been able to share that they are transgender, with younger people are more likely to have transgender friends and family members, a coordinated anti-transgender backlash has been launched in an attempt to stop this growing acceptance. In order to counteract the disinformation campaign targeting trans people, especially trans and gender-expansive youth, it is important to have resources with accurate, helpful information to correct the untruths and disinformation. These resources will be updated throughut the week.

The GLAAD Media Reference Guide: Focus on Transgender People

Recommended TV Shows, Video Games, Movies, and Journalism with Transgender Characters, Arcs, and Stories:

Recommended Resources on Transgender Healthcare:

Recommended Resources on Transgender Youth:

Recommended Resources on the Political Climate for Transgender People:

Recommended Resources for Familiarizing with the Transgender Community and Advancing Allyship:

As part of Transgender Awareness Week this year, GLAAD encourages allies to educate themselves about the community and take action to support.

What is GLAAD doing this year for Trans Awareness Week?

This year for Transgender Awareness Week, GLAAD is participating in organizing a number of events, conversations, and campaigns some of which will be updated throughout the week. 

Last year, GLAAD with Sundance Institute and the International Documentary Association (IDA) partnered to produce the DISCLOSURE Toolkit for Entertainment Industry Professionals designed to be used by film industry executives and creatives which contains information about the state of the industry, questions to consider and discuss, analysis of helpful and harmful representation, frequently asked questions, and further resources for best practices in authentic and accurate trans storytelling.

This year, GLAAD is encouraging all transgender people to take the 2022 U.S. Trans Survey from the National Center for Transgender Equality. It is the largest survey on the transgender community. Because most surveys don’t count trans people accurately, the 2022 U.S. Trans Survey is vitally needed as the main source of data about this community to accurately accumulate and assess data about the diversity of trans people across the country, and help inform public policy and allocation of resources.

GLAAD has also partnered with Getty Images on a $25,000 grant focused on the Chosen Family. The grant seeks diverse perspectives, photographers and videographers to help increase visibility of the LGBTQ community while also challenging harmful, cliched visual stereotypes. Especially as this relates to transgender and nonbinary people, there is great demand for more diverse imagery and non-stereotypical representation so recommend creators apply HERE by November 18, 2022. Judges for this intitiative include GLAAD's Director of Transgender Representation.

GLAAD has also partnered with ReFrame to contribute to ReFrame ReSource which provides more information to Hollywood on how to tell more authentic and accurate stories of communities historically misrepresented in media and storytelling. It is a new research hub with advocacy resources, best practices and research not proprietary to any single company or studio. The platform includes best practices in casting, building an inclusive set, and specific storytelling considerations for communities.

General resources: