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The Transgender Day of Remembrance (TDOR) occurs each year on November 20th. For the past 15 years, communities have been coming together to celebrate the lives of those who were killed by anti-transgender violence and to also bring awareness to the magnitude of transphobia prejudice and hate crimes. People are asked to put aside their differences to fight for the rights of all transgender individuals.

The Transgender Day of Remembrance began as a vigil to honor the memory of a transgender woman, Rita Hester, killed in 1998.  A transgender advocate started the “Remembering Our Dead” web project that hosted the vigil in San Francisco.

“The Transgender Day of Remembrance seeks to highlight the losses we face due to anti-transgender bigotry and violence. I am no stranger to the need to fight for our rights, and the right to simply exist is first and foremost. With so many seeking to erase transgender people — sometimes in the most brutal ways possible — it is vitally important that those we lose are remembered, and that we continue to fight for justice.” – Transgender Day of Remembrance founder Gwendolyn Ann Smith

Mental Health Implications

The discrimination and harassment endured by the trans population can lead to serious mental health issues. Depression, substance abuse, anxiety disorders and suicide are all linked to the emotional and physical trauma suffered by trans individuals. Mental health counselors are responsible for being aware of the adversities that the trans community faces as well as the ways in which they are able to advocate for justice.

To help guide counselors, the Association for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, & Transgender in Counseling (ALGBTIC) and the American Counseling Association published the Competencies for Counseling with Transgender Clients.

Other Resources & National Organizations:

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