Alliance MLA Paula Bradshaw has paid tribute to the volunteers and organisations providing support to the trans community, as Trans Awareness Week takes place.
The week, which ends with Trans Day of Remembrance on Friday (November 20), encourages people to do stuff to mark and raise awareness of trans equality.
“Trans Awareness Week provides an opportunity for the health and social care board, as well as health officials and Trusts, to reflect on how they are supporting the trans community here in Northern Ireland,” said South Belfast MLA Mrs Bradshaw.
“The Department of Health is currently undergoing a review of gender identity services, and I would encourage the Department to rectify the huge pressures on, and underfunding of, the Regional Gender Identity Service at Brackenburn. I urge the Health Minister to expedite this work so the trans community, and the groups that support them, are supported to play a central role in the resulting health care.
“Unfortunately, the discrimination and marginalisation many members of the trans community experience is still far too prevalent. On Friday, we should all recognise Transgender Day of Remembrance, and honour the memory of those transgender people whose lives were lost in acts of anti-transgender violence around the world and those who led the way in the fight for equality.
“Here in Northern Ireland, every one of us can play a role in ending this discrimination by better educating ourselves and providing a hand of friendship to the trans community.”