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B.C. legislature marks Transgender Day of Remembrance

Last Updated Nov 20, 2019 at 11:53 am PDT

(Source: iStock)

The trans flag was raised at the B.C. legislature in Victoria to mark the Transgender Day of Remembrance

The day was founded in 1999 to memorialize those who have been murdered due to transphobia

VICTORIA (NEWS 1130) – History was made at the British Columbia legislature on Wednesday. The transgender flag was raised at the provincial parliament buildings for the very first time.

It’s to mark the international Transgender Day of Remembrance, a day founded in 1999 to memorialize those who have been murdered due to transphobia.

In a statement, Premier John Horgan said it’s up to all British Columbians to help make change.

RELATED: ‘Almost took a knife to my chest’: Canadian doc follows emotional transgender journey

“As a government, we’re taking steps to make our province safe and welcoming for trans people by affirming, acknowledging and teaching about all gender identities in our schools, providing a non-binary gender option on government identification, improving access to gender-affirming surgeries, and re-establishing a human rights commission to fight inequality and discrimination in all its forms,” the statement says.

“This moment is long overdue. In a better world, it would be a moment of celebration. But in this world, where so many trans people are hurt and killed for who they are, it is a call to fight for justice for all. We will not let the bright lives of our trans friends, family members and neighbours to be erased from memory. We see you. We honour you. We remember you.”

Parliamentary Secretary for Gender Equity Mitzi Dean and Vancouver-West End MLA Spencer Chandra Herbert were also on hand for the flag-raising on Wednesday morning.

“The vast majority of those who are murdered are trans women of colour, and their average age is just 31 years old,” Dean said in her remarks after the flag went up. “They live among us, with us, in our neighbourhoods. November 20 is a day when we honour the memory of those lost due to violence and transphobia.”