August 6, 2019 at 3:30 pm EDT | by Lou Chibbaro Jr.
Trans March on Washington set for Sept. 28
National Transgender Visibility March, gay news, Washington Blade
The National Transgender Visibility March on Washington will take place Saturday, Sept. 28. (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

A National Transgender Visibility March on Washington originally planned for March 31 will now take place Saturday, Sept. 28, according to a statement released on Tuesday by organizers of the march and related events.

Marissa Miller, a D.C.-based transgender activist and lead organizer, said the march will begin with a 9:30 a.m. rally at Freedom Plaza in downtown D.C. in which prominent transgender and LGBT rights advocates will speak.

Among those scheduled to speak at the rally will be actress, transgender rights advocate, and businesswoman Angelica Ross, who starred in the FX series “Pose,” the statement released on Tuesday says. Also confirmed as speakers are Alphonso David, the recently named president of the Human Rights Campaign; and Earline Budd, the longtime D.C. transgender rights advocate, according to Miller.

HRC’s annual national dinner is scheduled to take place Saturday evening, Sept. 28, after the march. Miller said many people coming to D.C. for the dinner were expected to join the march.

Following the Freedom Plaza rally the Trans Visibility March is scheduled to proceed to the U.S. Capitol, Miller said.

“Members of the transgender and gender non-conforming communities will take a major stand against hate and discrimination when they rally in the nation’s capital for the first-ever National Trans Visibility March on Washington,” organizers said in a January statement announcing plans for the march.

“Transgender individuals from major metropolitan cities including Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, Memphis, New York and San Francisco will come together with their allies calling for equal rights, physical safety and demanding the transgender communities be officially and federally recognized across every state department within this great nation,” the statement says.

Mark Kormann, director of fundraising for the march, said a National Trans Visibility March Benefit Concert to help fund the march is scheduled to be held Aug. 23 at The Community Church of Washington, D.C.-UCC at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 23. The Seasons of Love Ensemble of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington, D.C. and the Gay Men’s Chorus of New York will be among the performers at the concert, Kormann said.

Kormann said watch parties in at least 13 cities were expected to view the concert through a live streaming broadcast. Miller said the march itself will be live streamed for people unable to come to D.C.

Kormann said an opening reception for people planning to participate in the march will be held Thursday, Sept. 26, to be followed by a Friday, Sept. 27, Torch Award Ceremony in which prominent transgender and gender non-conforming leaders and activists will be honored. Both events will take place at the Crystal Gateway Marriott Hotel in Arlington, Va.

According to Kormann, 500 transgender and gender non-conforming people will come to the march from across the country on a scholarship made possible by contributions from supporters of the march and its related events. He said some will participate in community organizing workshops on Friday afternoon, the day before the march.

“They will then go back into their communities and start to mobilize their community,” he said. “So the idea is to give them tools to go back into their communities.”

Miller said another Trans March on Washington is also being planned for 2020 to coincide with the U.S. presidential election. She said details of that march, including the date and related events, would be announced at a later time.

She said anyone who believes in equality for all is invited to join the Sept. 28 Transgender Visibility March on Washington.

“We urge you to join us Sept. 28, 2019 as we march in solidarity in support of equal rights and inclusion for our community,” a statement on the march website says. “March with us to demand justice for our siblings whose lives were taken through senseless murders,” it says.

Additional details on the Sept. 28, 2019 march can be found at transmarchondc.org.

Lou Chibbaro Jr. has reported on the LGBT civil rights movement and the LGBT community for more than 30 years, beginning as a freelance writer and later as a staff reporter and currently as Senior News Reporter for the Washington Blade. He has chronicled LGBT-related developments as they have touched on a wide range of social, religious, and governmental institutions, including the White House, Congress, the U.S. Supreme Court, the military, local and national law enforcement agencies and the Catholic Church. Chibbaro has reported on LGBT issues and LGBT participation in local and national elections since 1976. He has covered the AIDS epidemic since it first surfaced in the early 1980s. Follow Lou

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