(EDGE) Monday, the 20th of November, marks Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR), an annual observance that honors the memory of those whose lives were lost in acts of anti-transgender violence. This is an important year to acknowledge and participate in TDOR, in light of the record number of transgender people killed in the United States this year alone.
AP noted that The Human Rights Campaign, in a report released Friday, calculated that 102 transgender people have been killed in the U.S. over the past five years - including 25 this year. Its report, jointly sponsored by the Trans People of Color Coalition, was issued ahead of Monday's annual Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR) observations, commemorating the hundreds of transgender people killed worldwide each year.
TDOR was started in 1999 by transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith as a vigil to honor the memory of Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was killed in 1998. The vigil commemorated all the transgender people lost to violence that year and began an important memorial that's now become an annual opportunity to commemorate our trans siblings.
"The Transgender Day of Remembrance seeks to highlight the losses we face due to anti-transgender bigotry and violence. I am no stranger to the need to fight for our rights, and the right to simply exist is first and foremost," said Gwendolyn Ann Smith "With so many seeking to erase transgender people -- sometimes in the most brutal ways possible -- it is vitally important that those we lose are remembered, and that we continue to fight for justice."
How can you participate?
Participate in the Transgender Day of Remembrance by attending or organizing a vigil on November 20 to honor all those whose lives were lost to anti-transgender violence this year. Vigils are typically hosted by local transgender advocates or LGBTQ organizations and held at community centers, parks, places of worship, and other venues.
Visit GLAAD's TDOR page to learn more and find a vigil near you.
For TDOR, GLAAD will remember the meaningful lives of those trans people that have been killed this year. GLAAD invites all to stand against anti-trans violence and commemorating trans loved ones.