Every year, on November 20, Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDoR) or International Transgender Day of Remembrance is observed. This day is to commemorate transgender people who were murdered in activities related to transphobia.
The main purpose of TDoR is to draw attention to the continuing violence faced by transgender people.
Transgender Day of Remembrance was established in 1999 by Gwendolyn Ann Smith to memorialise the murder of Rita Hester, a transgender woman, in Allston, Massachusetts. Hester was murdered on November 28, 1998. The incident caused an uproar among citizens, especially the transgender community, and it inspired an important tradition that has become the Transgender Day of Remembrance.
“Transgender Day of Remembrance seeks to highlight the losses we face due to anti-transgender bigotry and violence. I am no stranger to the need to fight for our rights, and the right to simply exist is first and foremost. With so many seeking to erase transgender people — sometimes in the most brutal ways possible — it is vitally important that those we lose are remembered, and that we continue to fight for justice,” Gwendolyn Ann Smith was quoted as saying by Glaad.org.
TDoR pays tribute to all transgender people who lost their lives due to anti-transgender violence. A TDoR memorial typically includes reading names of those killed from November 20 of the past year to November 20 of the current year.
How one can participate in Transgender Day of Remembrance?
Whether you belong to any faction of the queer community or not, anyone can participate in TDOR.
1) You can attend a vigil today in memory of all the transgender who have lost their lives to anti-transgender violence. LGBTQ activists and trans advocates usually host TDOR vigils in a public place.
2) In case there is no vigil in your city, then organise one. Read out the names of all the victims of anti-transgender violence this year.
3) Educate yourself and other about transphobia and violence against the trans community.