This Saturday, November 20, will be the 23rd annual Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR), a day to honor the lives of transgender and non-binary individuals who have been lost to anti-trans violence.
TDOR was started in 1999 by trans advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith to honor Rita Hester, a Black trans woman who was murdered in November 1998.
The day involves community vigils and events around the country, providing space to mourn and raising public awareness of the epidemic of anti-trans violence in the United States.
Raising this awareness is, unfortunately, more relevant than ever.
Earlier this month, the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) declared 2021 to be the deadliest year on record since the organization began tracking murders or violent deaths of transgender people.
This year, HRC reports that at least 46 trans and gender non-conforming people have been killed by violent means.
Since January 2013, HRC has recorded at least 254 victims to anti-trans violence, while acknowledging that the number is likely higher due to deaths that “go unreported, or misreported.” At least 66% of the victims HRC tracked were Black trans women.
For those looking for a space to honor the lives that have been lost, we’ve compiled some events taking place around the country.
There are, however, so many more events taking place in cities and towns all over the United States. If you don’t see your hometown on this list and you can’t find an event in your town online, you can participate in one of the many virtual events planned for Saturday.
New York City’s LGBTQ community center is hosting a virtual event on Thursday, November 18 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. EST. The event will include a healing ceremony, speeches by trans advocates, performances, a reading of names, support from Center staff, and more. Those interested in attending can register here.
The Transgender Education Network of Texas will also hold a virtual event on Saturday at 6:00pm CST. In addition to a ceremony, the organization will also offer mental health support in Zoom breakout rooms.
New York City
New York City’s LGBTQ community center will also host an in-person event on Saturday, November 20 from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m., located at The Glade in Little Island.
The city’s Black-led, trans-led LGBTQ+ community center, Brave Space Alliance, will hold a vigil, town hall, and community luncheon on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
This event will specifically honor five Black trans women killed in Chicago this year. It will take place at the organization’s space at 1039-1041 E. 43rd St.
The San Francisco Community Health Center will hold a community gathering on Saturday from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Fluid Co-op, 332 Golden Gate Ave.
The D.C. Center for the LGBT Community will hold an event on Saturday from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the Metropolitan Community Church of Washington, 474 Ridge St. NW.
The River City Gender Alliance will host a performance by the River City Mixed Chorus. The event will also include speakers, the reading of names, a candlelight ceremony, and dessert reception. It will take place at the First United Methodist Church, 7020 Cass Street.
In Jackson, the TRANS program will host a ceremony in the Yates Chapel at Millsaps College from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. There will also be a reception afterward. Those who cannot be there in person can join via Facebook livestream.
The ACLU of Indiana has posted a slew of events taking place across the state. Click here to find out more.
Albuquerque, New Mexico
The Transgender Resource Center of New Mexico will host an outdoor event at 5600 Domingo Rd NE in Albuquerque. There will be altars, an open mic, music, and light refreshments.
The Metro Trans Umbrella Group will host an event beginning at their headquarters, 3133 Oregon Ave in St. Louis, at 5:30 p.m. CST. Participants will then walk together to the group’s Transgender Memorial Garden, where a vigil will take place.