Annually, International Women’s Day is commemorated on March 8. This year, as a part of our International Women’s day campaign, we have chosen to speak about the often-forgotten group of women who are at most times invisible and silenced.
We speak about transgenders or transwomen.
Being a transgender means the gender that was assigned to the person at birth owing to his/her anatomy does not match the gender the person identifies with. It is a personal choice they make to establish their identity.
In our day to day life we come across transgender people almost every day. We mostly identify them as men (basis their body structure) sometimes wearing bright makeup and donning shimmery sarees, some clapping their hands at traffic signal points, buses and trains, some at the movies, etc. When approached by them, our first impulse is to turn away or thrust some small change in order to get rid of them or to avoid bad omen.
As per latest census, there are more than 2 million transgenders in India. In reality, they are seldom wholly accepted as members of mainstream community, nor are they given general respect. They face extreme discrimination in all spheres of society, especially in the field of employment, education and healthcare. They also face huge discrimination in access to public spaces such as restaurants, cinemas, shopping malls, etc. We never try to understand them as a fellow human being, their condition of living and how they survive on a day to day basis.
They don’t need any special treatment. They just need to be respected as a human being and are as deserving of dignity as anyone else.
Let’s remember to celebrate diversity and include all women as we gear up to commemorate International Women’s Day 2019. Collective action and shared responsibility for driving a gender-balanced world is the key.
What are we requesting of you?
1) Do not be afraid or ashamed to look them in the eye
2) Do not make fun of them or ridicule them
3) As parents you can be the catalysts of change by sensitizing kids to aspects of gender diversity & teaching them to treat transgenders as they would other fellow human beings.
4) Do not be disturbed or walk away if they sit besides you in public places or use restrooms
5) If you are a parent of a child who is going through a gender crisis, help him/her to come to terms and guide them.
This campaign doesn’t end on International Women’s Day but we wish for it to begin here.
Happy Women’s Day 2019 to each and every woman out there !