November 20th, 2020 will mark the 21st annual day of Trans Gender Day of Remembrance. First marked in 1999 to honour Rita Hester, a transgender activist who was brutally murdered in her home in Boston. It is a day set aside to honour those who have been killed or targeted because of who they were.
Not only does this day honour those who have been lost due to hate and transphobia, but also to bring attention to the work that still remains to be done. Although we have come a long way from 1999, the hate and transphobia for our gender non-conforming brothers and sisters is still present and we need to work harder to eradicate this and promote human rights.
In 2017, Canada adopted legislation to provide protection for gender identity and gender expression which in turn updated the Canadian Human Rights Act as gender identity and gender expression were added to the prohibited grounds for discrimination. It was a step forward in inclusion; however a lot more needs to be done as trans people are still being targeted disproportionately by gender violence, especially racialized people.
At UVAE we support all our transgender non-conforming brothers and sisters and make a vow to work harder to eradicate hate and violence!
Human Rights Committee