Remembering Lucy Meadows #TDOR


Today is Transgender Day of Remembrance. If you don’t know about this, there is a thought-provoking report here from a TDOR vigil including information on what it is about, why it is important and why it is not just for trans people but for everyone.

Much has been written today about the 238 transgender people who have been murdered this year worldwide. The majority of these deaths happened in North and South America; there are only a handful of European killings and no UK deaths listed on the TDOR memorial wall. So, that means we’re okay in the UK, then? It doesn’t happen here, right?

I hate to break it to you but it does happen here, and it did on 19 March 2013 when primary school teacher Lucy Meadows took her own life. If you don’t remember her story, you can read a news report here. But that was different, she committed suicide. It’s not the same thing, is it?

Correct, it wasn’t murder. So, what was it? It is for you to decide who you think is to blame for Lucy Meadows’s death and how culpable the players in the story are. My view is that it was the public humiliation and bullying of an individual, for no other reason than they were transgender, by an institution so large and powerful that the individual concerned had no possible way to defend themselves. If you want evidence as to how seriously the abuse of transgender people is taken in the UK, nobody has been prosecuted or even lost their job over their actions in making Lucy Meadows’s life unbearable.

If you do nothing else today, take a moment to consider how the murder of transpeople gets to the stage of being accepted by a society and not prosecuted by the forces of law and order, and consider whether there is anything you want to change about how you viewed the story of Lucy Meadows.

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