National Trans Visibility Day in Brazil Date in the current year: January 29, 2024

National Trans Visibility Day in Brazil National Trans Visibility Day (Dia Nacional da Visibilidade Trans), also known as National Day of Transgender Visibility, is observed in Brazil on January 29 every year. It was created to raise awareness of the transgender community withing the wider LGBT community in Brazil.

National Trans Visibility Day commemorates the Travesti e Respeito (“Trans People and Respect”, or, to be more precise, “Transfeminine People and Respect”) campaign that was launched by Brazilian transgender activists in collaboration with the National STI and AIDS Program of the Ministry of Health.

At the time, the Ministry was seeking new measures to combat the spread of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), which are often associated with prostitution. But what did it have to do with transgender rights? The thing is, prostitution was often the only available occupation for transgender people who faced discrimination in the formal labor market and often came from socially vulnerable backgrounds. By including transgender people in the program’s agenda, the Ministry of Health recognized the challenges they face.

On January 29, 2004, a group of transgender activists organized a demonstration in front of the National Congress to launch the Travesti e Respeito campaign, highlight the struggles of transgender people in Brazil, and promote rights and respect for all people regardless of their gender identity and sexual orientation. Thanks to their efforts, the Ministry of Health designated January 29 as National Trans Visibility Day.

Even though Brazil is one of the most progressive countries in the world when it comes to LGBT rights (same-sex couples can marry and adopt, LGBT people are allowed to openly serve in the military, transgender people can change their legal name and gender without the need of surgery, hormonal therapy or any kind of evaluation, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity is outlawed, etc.), it is one of the most dangerous countries in the world for transgender individuals.

According to Transgender Europe, Brazil has the highest number of homicides of transgender people globally, accounting for about 40% of all murders of transgender individuals since 2008. Transgender people from religious families, especially in rural areas, are often disowned by their families and end up homeless. Trans individuals still face discrimination in the job market and have limited professional education and employment opportunities even though discrimination on the basis of gender identity is forbidden by law; poor trans individuals simply don’t have the resources to seek legal protection of their rights.

So while Brazil has made a lot of progress in the realm of LGBT rights since that 2004 demonstration, there is still a long way to go. National Trans Visibility Day is meant to remind that transgender and non-binary individuals are often marginalized even withing the LGBT community but they have the same right to exist, belong, be heard, and feel safe as any other person out there.

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National Trans Visibility Day in Brazil, observances in Brazil, LGBT observances, National Day of Transgender Visibility