Friday 20 November was the day we mourned our transgender brothers, sisters, friends, strangers and loved ones who have died because of transphobic hate.
It was the day we remembered them, remembered their strength and their love, and showed our support for a community that so needs our love this year.
This year, 350 transgender people were murdered. This year, a 15-year-old was murdered because they were transgender. This year, 6 percent more transgender people were murdered compared to last year.
What can you do?
Show your support. This may be as simple as putting your preferred pronouns in your Instagram bio even though you’re cisgender. It may be texting a friend that you know is transgender or gender non-conforming and telling them that you care. It may be educating yourself on transgender history, on their struggles, the biases they face, learning about different genders, pronouns and experiences.
Whatever you do just show your support – a good place to start is https://www.glaad.org/tdor
All that the transgender community is asking for is safety and equality. Your love isn’t limited, give it to those who need it.
And if you are transgender or gender non-conforming….
Cardiff University has a Disclosure Response Team who are available to confidentially, non-judgmentally support any student who experiences violence, abuse or unacceptable behaviour. They are there to listen no matter your gender or sexuality.
The University also has dedicated support for trans students, non-binary students, and any other student questioning their gender identity. They are able to offer practical support such as changing details on the university system (name, gender identity, title, email address); communicating changes to academic staff; providing information about mental health support both at university and externally. For more information visit their intranet page or email TransCU@cardiff.ac.uk.
However, it can also feel isolating when you are gender non-conforming, so a Trans Space has been set up for those who want to meet people like themselves. Email TransSpace@cardiff.ac.uk to register your interest.
As a cis-gendered person, I will never fully understand the pain that my trans family experience but today I will be your support as much as I can. I will learn more, I will march with you and I will send love and acceptance your way. Please just remember that you are not alone. There are people who love you.