Many argue that the LGBTQ+ community does not receive much visibility in society, especially for transgender individuals due to the closure of activities and constant hate given to most of the community. However, on March 31st, it was a day to be reckoned with: Transgender Visibility Day.
This holiday was established in 2009 by Rachel Crandall-Crocker, who wanted to fight back against hate for transgender people. Crandall-Crocker, being transgender herself, stated, "I was waiting and waiting for someone else to do it. And then finally I said, ‘I’m not waiting anymore.'" Transgender communities had nothing to celebrate and the new holiday brought awareness to violence against transgender people.
In 1998, Rita Hester, a Black transgender woman, was brutally stabbed in her own apartment located in Boston. Before this tragic event, many transgender individuals were heavily targeted and when the first annual Transgender Visibility Day came around, they marched through Hester’s neighborhood. Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR), a day honoring transgender homicide victims, was born due to this action. Crandall-Crocker, who had lost both a marriage and a job as a psychotherapist when she came out, decided to create the day herself by organizing a Facebook group. March 31 would be Transgender Visibility Day. The date was placed far enough away from TDOR in November and Pride Month in June that it would not conflict with either.
In 2021, the holiday was celebrated heavily because there was less hate for trans people this year. Last year, people attempted to take down the anti-trans bills pending in multiple state legislatures. Most of those bills would have limited transgender youth from playing sports and accessing affirming and affordable medical care. To help prevent this, President Joseph R. Biden Jr passed an act called the Equality Act, which states the following: "The Equality Act will deliver legal protections for LGBTQ+ Americans in our housing, education, public services, and lending systems. It will serve as a lasting legacy to the bravery and fortitude of the LGBTQ+ movement" (The White House). This act prohibits discrimination based on sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity in public accommodations and facilities, education, federal funding, employment, housing, credit, and the jury system—also defining and including sex, sexual orientation, and gender identity among the prohibited categories of discrimination or segregation.
While this day has passed, more help could be contributed to helping the community, such as helping other transgender individual get the respect and care they need; even donating to them to help for surgeries or medication. And most importantly, show support for them as much as you can!