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WHEREAS, in 1999, a group of transgender people and activists held the first Transgender Day of Remembrance vigil in Boston and San Francisco to honor the life of Rita Hester, a transgender African American woman who was murdered in 1998; and
WHEREAS, designated on November 20th of each year, Transgender Day of Remembrance honors the memory of transgender people whose lives were lost to senseless violence, self-harm, and structural inequities; and
WHEREAS, LGBTQIA+ organizations, community members, and allies help raise awareness of the importance of inclusion, protections, and respect for transgender and gender non-conforming people; and
WHEREAS, it is critical that an intersectional perspective and acknowledgement of systemic racism, sexism, and transphobia is needed to effectively address the needs and concerns of transgender individuals; and
WHEREAS, African American and Latinx transgender individuals, as well as other transgender people of color, disproportionately make up the majority of those murdered, attacked, and denied equal treatment; and
WHEREAS, the transgender people lost this year and years prior deserve to be honored and remembered; because their lives mattered and they will forever be missed by their friends, family, and community; and
WHEREAS, we will continue to advocate and promote more inclusive changes that so many people in our Commonwealth deserve;
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Ralph S. Northam, do hereby recognize November 20, 2021, as TRANSGENDER DAY OF REMEMBRANCE in our COMMONWEALTH OF VIRGINIA, and I call this observance to the attention of all our citizens.