Posted on Tue 13 Nov 2018 at 13:00 by Christopher Carter
[Content Note: Transphobia, Trans Day of Remembrance, Violence]
This week, we are marking Trans Awareness Week 2018 and celebrating our trans community both here on campus and further afield. We hope people will see this week as an opportunity to learn more about the trans community in general, as well as to have their questions about what it’s like being trans answered. You can get involved as much as you are able to - whether that is by learning how to better support your trans friends or by getting involved in campaigns. Whatever you want to do, there is plenty going on!
I’d like to take this opportunity to highlight how much the trans community needs your support at the moment. We’re slowly recovering from the outburst of transphobic hate that the Gender Recognition Act consultation stirred up, while continuing to face an onslaught of negative articles in the media. Meanwhile, across the ocean, our trans siblings are facing the threat of being stripped of their fundamental rights and legal protections. All across the western world, the ominous rise of fascism and far-right views similarly frightens us. That is why it is more important than ever for trans allies to stand up for trans people and their human rights. Throughout the week, we’ll be sharing lots of resources on how you can do this.
Last week, we remembered those who lost their lives in war. Next week, I’d like to ask you to remember another group of people. Trans Day of Remembrance takes place on Monday 19th November - this is a day for the trans community, and our wider community of allies, to remember those trans people who have lost their lives through transphobic violence. These people are predominantly trans women of colour, many of whom are from the global south. A full list of deaths is published each year, but these are only the ones we know about. It is always a difficult and painful day for the trans community. It is not the day to ask lots of questions, but instead a day to listen to and mourn with us. Tell your trans friends they have your support and that you are thinking of them on TDOR.
That all said, I remain optimistic for the trans community and for trans rights. Whilst there has been a lot of pushback against the trans community, there have also been others both within and outside that community who have gotten together to help protect trans rights. For many people, the current global climate has made them realise that they need to stand up and actively campaign to protect and establish these rights. I do believe that with the support of others, we can make something good come out of all the frightening and ominous political movements that are taking hold around the world. I’m not about to give up hope yet. We didn’t get Civil and LGBT+ rights by asking for them nicely, and we mustn’t lose them because we stopped fighting. Right now, we need to use all the methods we have at our disposal. We must continue to campaign and protest loudly, whilst also voting and engaging with politicians where we can. And we need numbers - we need the support of trans allies. So please, support your trans friends and get involved in the fight for trans rights.
So, what’s on this week? We have training workshops for Societies and Sports Clubs, a talk by a guest speaker, a discussion group, a quiz and the relaunch of the trans support group. Check out the SU page (https://www.warwicksu.com/campaigning/campaigns/liberation/transawarenessweek/) for the full list of events!