Protect Trans Youth signs

Photo credit: GLSEN

Trans Day of Visibility has been celebrated since 2009 on March 31. At G4GC, we recognize the importance of investing in futures where trans girls and young women of color are healthy and thriving. 

 

Trans youth deserve our support and recognition

At Grantmakers for Girls of Color when we say that we support girls and gender-expansive youth of color, we mean all girls and gender-expansive youth of color. On Trans Day of Visibility (TDOV), we honor the specific contributions and experiences of trans girls and young women of color in our communities, recognize the challenges they face, and urgently challenge us all to listen to trans leaders on the ground and support them.

Trans Day of Visibility is an important day to come together, support, and act in solidarity with trans people. At G4GC, we recognize that trans girls and young women of color continue to face multiple forms of discrimination and systemic violence at the intersections of transphobia, racism, classism, misogyny and misogynoir (the unique misogyny that Black girls and women face). Part of our work requires us to combat the erasure of contributions and experiences that trans girls and young women of color make to our communities and movements. 

 

Eva Reign profile picture

We were honored to partner with the incredible Eva Reign (@msevareign), Digital Media Manager at Marsha P. Johnson Institute, Film Fellow, and artist to discuss representation of trans girls and and young women of color in the media during Black Girl Freedom Week. Watch the event here. (Photo credit: Eva Reign).

And while visibility is essential, it must be met with support. All too often, public narratives and representation of trans girls and young women of color weaponize their visibility as a way to humiliate and harm them. The impacts of this weaponization have significant consequences—around the country trans youth are under attack in schools and communities, through efforts to implement policies that violate, silence, dehumanize, and discard them.  

This moment challenges us all to be on the right side of history. So far in 2021, there are dozens of bills that aim to regulate the lives of trans youth. Across the country, 28 states are voting on anti-trans legislation in 2021, according to the ACLU. These bills range from banning trans children from playing on sports teams, to banning medical care for trans youth. And we know that trans girls of color will bear the brunt of this harm. On this Trans Day of Visibility, we need to contemplate our individual and collective accountability to trans girls and young women of color, and ensure that their rights are protected. 

When trans girls of color tell us who they are, we must listen and work actively to create the space and the conditions for them to live in the fullness of their identities, and to make those diverse identities visible. We must protect them. Historically, we have failed to do this. And right now, we have an opportunity to prevent further erasure and violence, if we respond to them with love, support, and resources. 

We are proud at G4GC to resource organizations that specifically engage, uplift, and support trans girls of color. Some of these include: 

Organizations that support trans girls

 

We encourage you to learn more about these organizations and support them. Trans girls and young women of color are at the forefront of many of our social justice movements, and they deserve to be robustly resourced. Their very existence offers us an example of what it means to embody the futures we dream about. If we invest abundantly in their dreams and their capacities to lead, we are sure to be one step closer to more liberated, just futures. 

In community,

Monique W. Morris, Ed.D., Executive Director, Grantmakers for Girls of Color

Bré Rivera, G4GC Advisory Board Member & Program Officer, Black Trans Fund