Recognizing International Transgender Day of VisibilityMar 29, 2021
Dear BC Community,
Next week marks the 12th annual International Transgender Day of Visibility which occurs on March 31. It’s a day to acknowledge and celebrate the accomplishments and victories of transgender and gender-nonconforming people.
In 2009, transgender activist Rachel Crandall created International Transgender Day of Visibility to build awareness of the many contributions transgender people have made to our society, while also raising awareness of discrimination faced by transgender people worldwide. International Transgender Day of Visibility provides an opportunity to celebrate and advocate for transgender people on our campus, in our families, and in our community.
This year we can celebrate President Biden’s signing of an Executive Order on Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation. Congress is considering the Equality Act. And Dr. Rachel Levine has made history by becoming the first openly transgender person to be confirmed by the Senate to a federal position.
At the same time, Dr. Levine faced transphobic questions and comments during her congressional hearing. And though we have seen some progress on the federal level, there have been 95 anti-transgender bills introduced in state legislatures since January 1st. This marks the highest number of anti-transgender bills in history. These bills attack the transgender community by threatening economic, legal, and reputational damages. Many of these bills target students. And they would have even deeper impact on BIPOC trans people.
It is important that we do not limit our transgender support and advocacy to a single day. We, as a country and as a college, need to do more to achieve trans justice. This includes deepening our understanding of the challenges and issues transgender people face. Learning more about the significant contributions they’ve made. And creating a welcoming environment where they can thrive.
Thank you for continuing to make BC a better, more equitable place for all.
Gary Locke (he/him)