The City of West Hollywood is hosting a Virtual Remembrance Ceremony for Transgender Day of Remembrance 2020 on Friday, November 20, 2020, at 6 p.m.. The online event will feature speakers and a reading of names to memorialize people who have been murdered as a result of anti-transgender violence.
Community members will recite the name of at least one person and give brief biographical details of the person being memorialized. The reading is pre-recorded and will be part of a video presentation, which will be played during the virtual event. The City encourages community members to take part and to honor these lives and memories as well as to take the opportunity to reflect on the work that remains to be done.
The City of West Hollywood and its Transgender Advisory Board recognize November as Transgender Awareness Month with a series of events, which this year are being held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) tracks annual statistics of violence against the people in the transgender community. In the latest statistics currently available, HRC has reported that in 2020 there have been at least 33 transgender or gender non-conforming people fatally shot or killed by other violent means in the United States. A disproportionately high number of victims are Black and Latinx transgender women. The 2020 report follows reports of 27 deaths in 2019; 26 deaths in 2018; 29 deaths in 2017; and 23 deaths in 2016. According to HRC: “it is clear that fatal violence disproportionately affects transgender women of color, and that the intersections of racism, sexism, homophobia, biphobia, transphobia and unchecked access to guns conspire to deprive them of employment, housing, healthcare, and other necessities, barriers that make them vulnerable.” This wave of violence has been declared an epidemic by the American Medical Association. Rates of actual violence or deaths may, in fact, be higher but anti-transgender violence can be difficult to accurately measure, as victims are sometimes misgendered in reports, which can delay awareness of deadly incidents.
The City of West Hollywood has been one of the most outspoken cities in the nation in advocating for the legal rights of LGBT people. More than 40 percent of residents in the City of West Hollywood identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. The City of West Hollywood is one of the first municipalities to form a Transgender Advisory Board, which addresses matters of advocacy on behalf of transgender people in the areas of education, community awareness, and empowerment, and makes recommendations to the West Hollywood City Council. Through its Transgender Advisory Board, the City of West Hollywood regularly co-sponsors programming and recognizes Transgender Awareness Month and Transgender Day of Remembrance each November. For more information about the City of West Hollywood’s Transgender Awareness Month events, visit www.weho.org/tam.
As part of its support of the transgender community, the City of West Hollywood has a Transgender Resource Guide available on the City’s website, which provides information about a variety of resources including legal, health, and social services, available in the Greater Los Angeles area to enhance and improve the well-being of transgender people.
To watch the Transgender Day of Remembrance 2020 ceremony, visit: https://zoom.us/j/92210616016