The recent murder of Shelley Hilliard, an African American transgender teen in Detroit, and the upcoming Transgender Day of Remembrance on Sunday will be the jumping off points for a town hall meeting on transgender visibility today, Friday, Nov. 18, at the Catch One in Los Angeles. The event is hosted by the Trans People of Color Coalition, a national organization dedicated to challenging racism and transphobia.
Here is their press release with the details:
Trans People of Color Coalition Hosts Town Hall on Transgender Visibility
On, Friday, November 18, “Come Together,” a town hall discussing the importance of building coalitions within the transgender community will take place at Jewel’s Catch One, 4067 West Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, Calif., 6 – 8 p.m., and will feature various transgender advocates and policymakers. The event is free and open to the public.
Studies show that transgender people face injustices in housing, health care, employment, and many other areas. Transgender and gender non-conforming people of color are hit the hardest. They are also more susceptible to anti-transgender violence than other groups.
“This is the first ever national focus on transgender people of color,” explains Kylar Broadus, founder of the Trans People of Color Coalition (TPOCC), a national organization dedicated to challenging racism and transphobia, and the main sponsor of the event. “It is critical that we empower people to advocate for themselves as we build this movement.”
Speakers include Valerie Spencer of Transcend Empowerment Institute, an organization which addresses empowerment on a social, cultural and holistic basis; Ezak Perez of Gender Justice LA, a non-profit working to elevate the collective power of the Los Angeles transgender community; Jaye Johnson of NuMan Trans Support Network, a group that serves to empower transmen and strengthen the transman community; and Li Williams of Alpha Omega Fraternity, a brotherhood that aims to actively increase transman visibility in the community and educate the public about the transman’s journey.
“We want to give transgender people of color a sense of self and community,” Broadus adds. “There are many of us that don’t feel that we’re being heard or connected to any movement. There is no one that can tell our story better than us; we live it daily and we have a voice.”
“Come Together” is sponsored in part by The Catch, NuMan Trans Support Network, Gender Justice LA and Alpha Omega Fraternity. The town hall is currently traveling across the country. The first of its kind was held earlier this year in Charlotte, N.C. where then city council candidate, LaWana Mayfield, now the newly elected and the first openly gay city council member in Charlotte, spoke about claiming our authenticity to break down barriers and build relationships. Upcoming community forums will take place in Detroit and Chicago in the following months.
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