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HRC Los Angeles Observes Transgender Day of Visibility

Submitted by Jim Wen, HRC Los Angeles Community Engagement Co-Chair​

HRC-Los Angeles (LA) was proud to participate in a Transgender Day of Visibility (TDOV) gathering on March 31. Lindsey Deaton, HRC-LA Membership Outreach Co-Chair, opened the event advocating for transgender and gender non-binary people’s justice on the steps of the Edward Roybal Federal Building in downtown Los Angeles.

Deaton was followed by genderqueer youth advocate Addison Rose Vincent (who uses they/them/their pronouns). Vincent spoke passionately, welcoming young community members and calling forth understanding and acceptance of the gender spectrum.  Speaking on behalf of parents, Gizella Czene affirmed PFLAG’s commitment to stand with the transgender and gender non-binary community. The event also recognized the one-year anniversary for the Los Angeles Transgender Advisory Council, chaired by longtime community advocate “Mama” Karina Samala, who was joined by her counterpart from the City of West Hollywood Transgender Advisory Board, Chair Coco LaChine,​to mark this milestone.  

In response to transgender housing needs, Alexandra Magallon, Chair for TransHaven LA, spoke about the organization’s services to help end homelessness.  Native American Navajo youth speaker Yue C. Begay gave a heartfelt message that reverberated against the walls of the federal building.

“No matter how much the colonized world tries to deny us, we have truth and compassion on our side,” Begay said. “That is our heritage and our legacy.”  

In addition, a youth representative from the LA LGBT Center and adult civil servant for the Los Angeles Police Department led a moving call and response affirmation pledging that cries of our community’s youth will be assuaged by accepting adults. In closing, Reverend Li Arnee from Unity Fellowship of Christ Church Los Angeles gave a spiritual blessing and reminded community members that we are made in the image of the creator. Ms. Deaton led an emotional group sing.  Individual hands began joining together until we were all connected as one people.