Trans Day of Remembrance 2018: A message from trans activists in the region
Bangkok, Thailand, Tuesday, 20th November 2018
Each year on the 20th of November, we gather to mourn and commemorate those we have lost their lives to transphobia. This day serves as a reminder of the continued injustice and violence that trans people experience. It reminds us of the necessity of creating the spaces for healing that our communities need to persevere, survive, and thrive.
Unfathomable violence has cut short the lives of our community members, and throughout the world governments fail to offer real, meaningful protection for trans people. Trans people continue to experience significant challenges and compounded discrimination that extend to many areas of their lives, including their personal safety and security, opportunities for meaningful and fulfilling employment, access to education, adequate housing, and appropriate and compassionate healthcare. These injustices are perpetuated by systemic transphobia, present throughout the institutions which make up our societies’ underlying power structures.
Between January 2008 to September 2018, we have lost 2,982 trans people to such hate and to the systematic structural barrier from the region.The pain of these losses is immense. Violence against our community members has profound consequences, impacting trans people’s wellbeing and often placing trans-led community organisations at the center to demand justice, coordinate funeral costs while continuing other critical programming. The compounded struggles create a difficult environment to continue the fight, but we do. The strength and resilience that occurs within trans communities is unparalleled, and in supporting one another through our shared struggles we discover beauty. The strength and resilience within our communities is unparalleled, and it is in our relationships with one another, our shared experiences, and our victories that we find an undeniable beauty and a powerful declaration of solidarity.
There are actions that society, government and institutions can be enact to reduce violence and protect trans people. Countries and allies must step up in taking action. The approaches to reduce the violence and discrimination against trans people must take into consideration intersectional spheres of identity including class, race, sexual orientation, and culture. Legal gender recognition based on self-identification, decriminalisation of sex work, and non-discrimination laws based on SOGIESC principles would improve the quality of life, dignity and safety of trans people. Sensitisation of police, government, health providers, and journalists is important to ensure that trans people receive appropriate and comprehensive care in any situation. Collecting information on the violence and deaths of trans people using gender sensitive and is key to ensure that trans people are treated with dignity. APTN with its community members urges all countries to step up and monitor cases of violence and discrimination against trans people, offer sensitive and appropriate support following any cases of violence and enact critical policies that are critical in ensuring no more lives are lost and justice due served to perpetrators.
Step up and demand for justice to the trans lives lost. Stand up for Trans Rights.
To see our key messages this year, click here.
For information about APTN and its country initiatives, visit www.weareaptn.org
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