Alberta sees increased trans visibility with Minister's address, public celebration, lights
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -- March 29, 2016 -- ALBERTA
Alberta Minister of Justice Kathleen Ganley will be the keynote speaker March 31 at Alberta's largest public celebration of Trans Day of Visibility in Calgary.
The Trans Equality Society of Alberta (TESA) is pleased to announce several activities supporting the 2016 Alberta observances of Trans Day of Visibility.
Trans Day of Visibility (TDOV) is an international observance held yearly on March 31. TDOV serves as an opportunity to celebrate the community, its individuals and accomplishments, and increase visibility and awareness for the transgender and gender diverse communities. TDOV is also an opportunity to bring visibility to both the supportive and discriminatory experiences that trans people face.
In Edmonton, the High Level Bridge will be lit in the colours of the trans flag in a public display of solidarity and support for the trans community.
In Calgary, Mayor Naheed Nenshi has proclaimed March 31 as Trans Day of Visibility. Within the proclamation, Mayor Nenshi notes that as “… trans individuals experience discrimination at extremely high rates, and are often forced into isolation … because of who they are,” observing Trans Day of Visibility serves to “raise awareness for the continued building of an inclusive and equitable society.”
Calgary will also light several prominent landmarks with the trans flag colours, including: Arts Commons, the Glenbow Museum, Stephen Avenue, Telus Spark, and the Calgary Tower.
TESA is also proud to announce that in partnership with Calgary Pride, it will host the province’s largest-ever single celebration of Trans Day of Visibility, a free event welcoming members, allies, and supporters of the trans community. Held in the heart of Calgary at the Jack Singer Concert Hall Lobby in Arts Commons, distinguished guests and community members will gather for a cocktail reception and presentation.
The highlight for the Calgary TDOV celebration will be a keynote address given by Alberta’s Minister of Justice Kathleen Ganley. Following an amendment of the Alberta Bill of Rights to include the terms 'gender identity' and 'gender expression' by the Prentice government, Minister Ganley was responsible for championing the same amendments to the Alberta Human Rights Act.
“In the past year, trans Albertans have seen our rights affirmed in Alberta law,” says Amelia Marie Newbert, TESA member and director of community development for Calgary Pride. “Provincial regulations for identification have been updated, and the unique supports needed by trans children and youth are increasingly recognised.”
Newbert notes these changes may signal the beginning of a foundational shift towards trans equality in the province.
“While there are still significant strides to be made towards ending the discrimination and stigma that trans individuals face on a daily basis, these steps are certainly positive and cause for celebration and hope on this Trans Day of Visibility,” says Newbert.
TESA is a non-profit organisation whose mission is to be a witness to and a voice for matters concerning trans Albertans.
For more information regarding Trans Day of Visibility, see Observances.
More information about TESA can be found at www.tesaonline.org
More information about Calgary Pride can be found at http://pridecalgary.ca/
Special note: Media are welcome to attend the Calgary event. Interview opportunities will be available after the presentations. For event inquiries, including itinerary and list of speakers, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
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