Thursday, October 24, 2013

What's Transgender Awareness Week?

Because the November 20 Transgender Day Of Remembrance is designed as a commemorative memorial service to remember and recognize the people we lost due to anti-trans violence during that calendar year, there have been calls to do an event that celebrates being us or sheds light on the issues relevant to being trans.

In Louisville, we would create a series of trans educational events to take place during the week leading up to our TDOR memorial service at the Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary's Caldwell Chapel. 

Some of those events would take place on the LPTS campus while others would be scheduled during the week at other venues like the University of Louisville or MCC and other open and affirming churches.     

That idea seems to have spread to other parts of the country to do the same, and it now has a formalized name in Transgender Awareness Week  

The dates are varying across the country for group that are organizing activities but it's generally falling in the period from November 13-22 this year with the TDOR occurring on a Wednesday.

The good thing about Transgender Awareness Week is its flexibility in how you can structure and format it. 

While it isn't and never will be appropriate to throw a party during that week, you can during the Transgender Awareness Week do things like have panel discussions on various trans themed topics, bring in trans guest speakers, have lectures, Safe Zone trainings, community town hall discussions, and viewings of trans themed documentaries and movies.

You could also use Transgender Awareness Week as an opportunity to partner with local law enforcement to discuss safety issues and help break down the mistrust and sometime animus that exists between the trans community and law enforcement.

It's an opportunity during that week while we have the media spotlight on trans people in some areas of the country for TDOR to partner with our cis allies.  We can use the runup to that day for discussing issues that are the underlying causes for the near-genocidal levels of anti-trans violence and come up with ways to fix the problem.

It's something to think about for next year if it's too late for you to organize a series of Transgender Awareness Week events for 2013.   

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