November marks transgender awareness month when transgender advocates raise awareness of the transgender community through education and advocacy activities. Recently L.A. City Council officially recognized this month to show support of the community and raise awareness to break the societal barriers associated with being queer/gender nonconforming. Los Angeles members of the city’s Transgender Advisory Council commemorated the month during the City Council meeting, providing information regarding violence the community has experienced.
Transgender Awareness week (November 13th-19th) leads into Transgender Day of Remembrance which is an annual observance on November 20th that honors the memory of the transgender people whose lives were lost in acts of anti-transgender violence that year. 2019 marks the 20th anniversary since this holiday was founded in 1999 by trans activist Gwendolyn Ann Smith after the brutal murder of Rita Hester, a Black trans woman, in 1998.
According to the Los Angeles County Human Relations Commission indicated that hate crimes targeting the transgender community are the highest among any demographic. In 2019, 23 deaths have been reported from anti-transgender and transmisgonoir violence, 20 of those deaths were Black people.
It’s important to know this holiday is not only for trans individuals, but also allies who bring attention to the community by educating the public about who transgender people are, sharing stories and experiences, and advancing advocacy around the issues of prejudice, discrimination, and violence that affect the transgender community. Nationwide public service building are being lit with rainbow colors and the trans flag hung to show their support of the community. With promotion from GLAAD, this celebration has received more media coverage and visibility than ever before.
See below for famous transgender individuals.