March 31, 2023

International Transgender Day of Visibility

International Transgender Day of Visibility

Happy International Transgender Day of Visibility! Today, March 31st, is a day in which we recognize the achievements, the joy, the pain, and the lived-experiences of trans people across the spectrum. The intersection of being trans and being a person with disabilities is vast, in fact according to one source “….quantitative studies in Canada and the US conclude that a significant percentage of the trans population is disabled: 55% of the trans population of Ontario…”. Digging beneath the Surface: When Disability Meets Gender Identity from the University of Waterloo. And that’s just in Ontario!

Statistics Canada - Transgender Community

According to Statistics Canada from the 2021 census, 100815 people self-identified as being transgender or nonbinary in Canada. That is about 0.33% of our country’s total population, and according to these same statistics, those 0.33% of people are some of the most vulnerable in Canada in terms of violence, job insecurity/violence, food insecurity, access to proper mental and physical health treatment, discrimination, lack of support for their disabilities, among a longer list of sad truths. Furthermore, trans people who are also disabled, are even more vulnerable. Those identifying as Trans BIPOC with disabilities are at the highest risk of suffering. With lack of resources, these people are often left with little to no support or help.

Celebrating the Transgender Community

Beyond recognizing the struggle of our transgender community, we believe it’s just as important to highlight trans persons strengths, resiliency, joy, and euphoria. Often the public perception of a trans person is someone who’s miserable, a person who can never love themselves – but that couldn’t be further from the truth. The infectious joy of seeing someone get to be who they really are is wonderful, awe-inspiring, and should be celebrated.

Trans people were also crucial to Stonewall and the LGBTQ2S+ liberation movement. Without trans people, we may have never seen that liberation. And contrary to what many sources may say, trans people have been around a lot longer than that.

How to Become an Ally

So how can you be an ally on this important day? A few things:

  1. Take some time to educate yourself. Go in with a curious mind, one eager to learn and empathize.
  2. Reach out to trans people you know to give them a bit of acknowledgement and support. They will appreciate it.
  3. Understand that sometimes learning the realities of what it’s like living as a trans person in 2023 will be uncomfortable, saddening, and anger-inducing. You may learn things you didn’t want to know, ways you may have indirectly been hurting trans people. It’s important to acknowledge and reflect on those feelings!
  4. Be mindful that while this is a day of celebration, for many trans people this can be a day of great pain as thoughts turn to those that have been lost this year.
  5. Try contacting local LGBTQ2S+ groups to see how you can get involved with help and aid.

“But how do I speak to a trans person?” is a question posed often. The answer is really simply – like you would anyone! If you are about to say something, or ask something, you wouldn’t to a cis person (a person happy with their assigned gender at birth), you probably shouldn’t. It is also never good to assume someone is trans. A good conversation opener can be as easy as, “Hi, my name is X, my pronouns are they/them, it is nice to meet you.”. By leaving the floor open, you allow the other person to open up if they want to, and by mentioning pronouns, you can make a trans person who may not be visible feel safer.

To all trans and nonbinary people of the world today – we not only recognize you, but we see you, and we want to help make the world a safer and more inclusive space for you. For more information on employment support, contact us


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