The flag has been raised to mark Transgender Day of Remembrance at Greater Manchester Police’s Headquarters today.
Chief Superintendent Wasim Chaudhry, Inspector Jacqui Prest from GMP’s Pride Network, PCSOs Kris Lysaght and Carla Doran, Police Cadet Alex Jones and Dawn Pomfret from Transforum – a support group for the trans community in Manchester, joined forces to raise the flag to mark the memorial day.
The Transgender Day of Remembrance takes place on 20 November each year to honour those who have lost their life due to anti-transgender hatred or prejudice, as well as raising public awareness of hate crimes against transgender people.
The national transgender charity, Sparkle, has organised a remembrance event which will take place at the National Trans Memorial in Sackville Gardens from 4.30pm onwards today.
Chief Superintendent Wasim Chaudhry said: “Greater Manchester is comprised of people from all backgrounds, cultures and ethnicities, and as a city we celebrate and embrace our differences. I’m proud to stand alongside colleagues to raise the flag in honour of Transgender Day of Remembrance.
“Even though the majority of Greater Manchester’s population embrace our differences, sadly homophobic, biphobic and transphobic hate crimes still happen. Transgender Day of Remembrance is an opportunity to send the message that this sort of behaviour is not acceptable, and urges people not to suffer in silence. It is also a chance for us to remember those who have sadly lost their lives due to anti-gender hate crime.”
Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner Jim Battle said: “This a day to remember those we have lost as a result of hatred and prejudice. But it is also a day of hope as we stand together in solidarity against hate and continue to work together to change attitudes and promote respect and tolerance across our communities.
“While we know more trans people are now coming forward to report hate crime, it is still massively underreported. My message to those who are suffering in silence is: please come forward, the police will take action and there is help and support available.
“There is a hope that one day everybody will be able to live as they wish, without fear of hatred and prejudice.”
About Transgender Day of Remembrance Dawn Pomfret from Transforum said: “This is a day to reflect and contemplate those friends who couldn’t hang on anymore, and mourning those that we haven’t met but you wish you could have. It reminds me of the brutality and ignorance there is out there, people not understanding that their actions and words have consequences.
“It is great to see GMP marking the occasion, and this helps to shine a light on the importance of breaking the silence there is with the transgender community. It is better for people to come forward and talk to the police about what they are going through and receive the help they require, not suffer in silence”.