Trans Awareness Week 2022

It is vital that we continue to shout for each other and thank all those that stand with us

Be a vocal ally

Sometimes, we inadvertently expect folks to be the ones making the noise about their own plight and cheer them from the sidelines, all whilst calling ourselves ‘allies’. I am determined to stop this trend within myself when it comes to other members of my community.

The LGBTQIA+ family has been a generous, forgiving, beautiful, diverse and supportive ‘chosen family’ for many of us through the years and we often bang each others’ drums and wave each others’ flags, however it’s not all Pride marches and rainbows.

This week has been Trans Awareness Week, which will come to a close on Sunday 20th on what is known as Transgender Day of Remembrance. A day to remember all those murdered as a result of transphobia. Typically, a memorial includes a reading of the names of those who died from October 1st of the former year to September 30th of the current year. I wonder how many names there will be this year. I wonder how much more violence will be directed at our trans family. How many more monuments destroyed.

I think most people are now ‘aware’ of trans folks, indeed there are so many media stories on trans and non-binary folks in the press, from sporting bodies and lobby groups, you’d almost forget that these are just normal humans, trying to get on with their lives peacefully, working hard and trying to access some decent healthcare and housing.

That’s the danger of demonising a minority, you tend to forget about humanity; you get lost in the rhetoric about ‘safe spaces’ and miss the point that someone is genuinely just trying to have a wee in a designated public bathroom, behind a closed door, without being harrassed or questioned. Or trying to access their bank account. Or playing a sport to relieve the stresses of life, feel the camaraderie and stay fit.

Being an ally isn’t always the easiest thing to do, it can come with its own challenges to speak up for those who have been vilified almost every weekend in the press or by famous folks on Twitter (#RIPTwitter) or your own mother who just doesn’t understand these things but has ‘opinions’ anyway. However, it is vital that we continue to shout for each other and thank all those that stand with us.

Active allyship

If you’ve got some spare pennies, you can always donate to Mermaids crowdfunder. I recently bought a t-shirt from their merch shop which I am very much looking forward to wearing under my dungarees. 

Or you can write to your local MP and talk to friends about resisting state harms to trans rights (changes to the Equalities Act can harm us all).

Or support these other brilliant organisations:

Black LGBTQIA Therapy Fund this fundraiser hopes to raise £1000 to pay for therapy sessions for 2 Black LGBTQIA+ persons aged 18+

Black Trans Alliance – BTA’s mission is to support, protect and amplify the voice of Black transgender persons in London and the wider community

African Rainbow Family – Support for LGBTIQ people of African heritage and the wider Black and Asian Minority Ethnic groups

Five for Five – Pooling cash for UK transfem causes

TransLeeds – Supporting the Transgender, Non-Binary and Gender Expansive Community in and around Leeds

gendered intelligence – A registered charity that exists to increase understandings of gender diversity and improve trans people’s quality of life