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Fresno State's student-run newspaper

The Collegian

Fresno State's student-run newspaper

The Collegian

Zayn+Anthony+spoke+at+the+Transgender+Remembrance+Day+event+hosted+in+the+SSU+as+part+of+a+collaboration+between+the+CCGC%2C+the+Department+of+Womens%2C+Gender+%26+Sexualities+Studies+and+Trans-E-Motion.+%28Diego+Vargas%2FThe+Collegian%29
Zayn Anthony spoke at the Transgender Remembrance Day event hosted in the SSU as part of a collaboration between the CCGC, the Department of Women’s, Gender & Sexualities Studies and Trans-E-Motion. (Diego Vargas/The Collegian)

CCGC honors Transgender Remembrance Day

The Fresno State Cross-Cultural and Gender Center (CCGC) and the Department of Women’s, Gender & Sexualities Studies hosted its annual Transgender Day of Remembrance event on Nov. 18 at the Satellite Student Union (SSU).­

The event was hosted in collaboration with local organizations, such as Trans-E-Motion, PFLAG and the Fresno Economics Opportunities Commission (EOC) LGBTQ+ Resource Center to honor the lives of transgender people whose lives were lost as a result of violence and transphobic harassment. 

Lexey Jenkins, the lead student coordinator for LGBTQ+ Programs and Services at the CCGC, spoke at the event, detailing the organization’s efforts to eliminate oppression on campus and facilitate diversity. 

“Recently we have been working with LGBTQ+ allies to bring gender-affirming care (GAC) to Fresno State, and I’m happy to [say] that we have become the fifth CSU to bring gender affirming care to our Student Health and Counseling Center,” Jenkins said.

The current fall 2022 semester was the first semester Fresno State offered GAC to students. 

During the event, Zayn Anthony, master of ceremonies and chair of Trans-E-Motion, unveiled a proclamation presented by the city of Fresno recognizing Nov. 18 as Transgender Remembrance Day in Fresno.­

“[Transgender Remembrance Day] invites people from all over Fresno County and the Central Valley to participate in activities provided to memorialize and honor the lives of transgender individuals who are murdered due to transphobia or had completed suicide,” Anthony said. “It is also an opportunity to raise awareness about transgender existence in our community.”

The event also marked the first time a representative of Fresno State’s Title IX Office was in attendance. Cassandra Hanlin, who identifies as nonbinary and uses they/them pronouns, is currently the deputy Title IX coordinator.

“I think it is critical for Title IX to be a part of these events to show support,” Hanlin said. “I think it’s critical that we show not only our support, but our intentionality in making sure that discrimination, harassment, retaliation and other types of sexual violence don’t occur on our campuses.” 

One speaker took the podium to talk about their experiences within the transgender community, acknowledging that in doing so they were coming out to a room of strangers. They were met with roaring applause.­­

The event also featured performances from students and community members who identify as part of the LGBTQ2+ community.

The event wrapped up with a memorial slideshow, where the names of transgender individuals who passed away were read aloud.­

“Every transgender and nonbinary life is precious and deserves love, support and protection. Violence against [the] transgender and nonbinary community is an epidemic that needs to be stopped,” said Arien Reed, secretary for Trans-E-Motion.

Mere hours after the event, a gunman opened fire at Club Q in Colorado, leaving five dead and 18 injured, according to reports from the Colorado Sun. The shooting sparked discussions regarding violent attacks against the LGBTQ2+ community. 

“The Club Q shooting was particularly shocking and tragic. From the Title IX Office, we say that we’re in support of all members of the LGBTQ community and [are] mourning with them in regards to that,” Hanlin said on Monday.

The Department of Women’s, Gender & Sexuality Studies also responded to the news of the shooting with a statement:

“The news of the mass shooting at Club Q in Colorado Springs, Colorado, has left us shattered, once again. With the Pulse Nightclub shooting still clear in our memories, and the Stonewall Riots a part of our not-so-distant past, this horrific attack on a space of queer joy reminds us that the work to protect the rights and lives of LGBTQ2+ people must continue and is a responsibility that we all must share. The fact that this tragedy was carried out during the weekend of Trans Day of Remembrance speaks to the depths and ubiquity of the violence continuously wielded against LGBTQ2+ people.”

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