What can health providers and advocates do to alleviate anti-trans violence? What can we all do?
This week (November 13th-19th) marks Trans Awareness week, an annually recognized week to highlight issues specific to the Transgender and Gender Non-conforming (Trans/GNC) communities. It is a week that culminates on November 20th, which is annually recognized as Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR). TDOR is a day to acknowledge those that we’ve lost to the persistent anti-trans violence within our society. To learn more, visit GLAAD’s webpages about Trans Awareness Week and TDOR.
Taking my first step into the field of violence prevention, I had a personal question about the meaning of “gender-based violence”. Surely, it must include folks that identify outside of the gender binary? When I started my position as Health Program Assistant at FUTURES, I was so excited to see resources specifically created for Trans/GNC communities, for my community. This week weighs heavily, and while the importance of remembrance cannot be understated leading up to TDOR, conversation within my own community continues as we ask the question, “What can we do to stop the violence?”
The following are just a few examples of ways that larger organizations are mobilizing, and spreading awareness during this week:
- GLAAD has organized to celebrate Trans Awareness Week with a campaign to highlight the stories that we love in 2019, using the #TransLoveStories hashtag on social media, visit the link to learn more.
- VawNet, a project of the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence, posted an informative blog titled, How can allies support trans and genderqueer communities for Transgender Day of Remembrance and beyond?, all about the recent CNN-sponsored LGBTQ town hall on October 10th, 2019 and guiding steps on how to plan your own TDOR event.
- @Themshealth, on Instagram, posted about Trans Awareness Week on social media and called for those who are looking to help to support organizations that directly serve Trans/GNC communities directly.
FUTURES has posted before about standing with people of all gender identities, and the National Health Resource Center on Domestic Violence (HRC) hopes to do just that by creating LGBQ and Trans/GNC specific resources, and offering technical assistance to advocates and health providers who are looking to make their programs and practices more inclusive of people who identify as Trans or GNC.
This year, I hope that this blog post will help to bring more visibility to the importance of inclusivity in care and prevention spaces. We’re here, and supportive environments are important to our health and happiness. Visit our webpage, www.futureswithoutviolence.org/health/lgbtq-ipv, to learn more about:
- How to use our Trans/GNC Safety Card and LGTBQ Poster, with examples scripts on how to talk to your patients/clients about healthy relationships
- Quick tips for having a more Trans/GNC inclusive health setting and program
- Links to other National resources that offer educational programs and resources for treating and working with Trans/GNC communities
Download and order hard copies of FUTURES’ resources mentioned above, all of the following resources are available in English and Spanish:
While these resources alone will not solve the problem of anti-transgender sentiment and violence, I can feel marginally better knowing that I am a part of an organization that see’s my humanity. Like any community, there are growing pains, learning new pronouns and ways of talking about identity and self is hard. But every effort counts on the way to imagining and creating a future without violence.
Graciela Olguin, Health Program Assistant