Transgender Day of Remembrance

Nov 19, 2021

Credit Shenandoah LGBTQ Center

The Shenandoah LGBTQ Center will host a vigil on Saturday to observe the annual Transgender Day of Remembrance. WMRA’s Randi B. Hagi reports.

Members of the LGBTQ community and their allies will gather at the center in downtown Staunton tomorrow evening to remember and honor those lost to anti-trans violence in America this past year.

ANHTHU NGUYEN: And so this year, there have been at least 47 members of our community that we've lost, many of whom are Black trans women of color.

AnhThu Nguyen is the director of the center.

NGUYEN: This is an important opportunity, especially as an organization, to provide a safe space for our community, particularly for our trans and nonbinary community, to gather and to find care and support for one another, but also I think, to provide them space to process the weight of this. It's a heavy weight to know, I think, that their identity puts them at increased risk for violence.

The event will include time for folks to talk about how these deaths, and the country's attitudes towards trans people at large, affect them. The vigil starts at 7:30 p.m, and attendees are asked to show up masked and respectful.

NGUYEN: We want to definitely provide that space for them to talk about how they're feeling, but also, we'll have a slideshow that will contain pictures and the names of everyone that we've lost in the last year due to anti-trans violence. We'll have a staff member … will speak each name aloud, and we'll light candles in honor of everyone.

The center's newly opened Harrisonburg-based program, the Friendly City Safe Space located in the Ice House, also has open hours tomorrow from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.