Trans Day of Remembrance: A call to safeguard hard-won freedoms and rights 

People across Canada will be participating in Trans Awareness Week events from November 13-19, which culminates in the recognition of Trans Day of Remembrance (TDOR) on November 20.

This year marks the inaugural year that the transgender flag will be flown in place of the UBC flag from November 13-20 in observance of Transgender Awareness Week from November 13-19 and Transgender Day of Remembrance on November 20. Additionally, the flags will be lowered on Monday, November 20.

TDOR commemorates transgender and non-binary (TGNB) people who have disproportionately lost their lives in hate-motivated crimes. This last year has been very distressing to 2SLGBTQIA+ communities and allies, locally and nationally, as we have seen the surfacing of bigotry and rise in hate-motivated violence targeting 2SLGBTQIA+ citizens.

TDOR is therefore also a call to safeguard hard-won 2SLGBTQIA+ – and particularly TGNB – freedoms and rights and to sustain efforts to further extend these rights and freedoms into all domains of society. Attempts to curtail, if not eliminate, universal and inalienable freedoms and rights to dignity and equality for any members of the citizenry and the UBC community must be rejected. Promoting the rights of one group cannot be done at the expense of the rights of another group. 

Sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression are among the protected characteristics under the BC Human Rights Code. The Equity & Inclusion Office Human Rights Advising team offers confidential advising for any student, faculty or staff who may have concerns or complaints related to discrimination. 

Join members of the UBC community in learning more about how you can support trans rights, trans inclusion and trans affirming care, available resources, and forthcoming events at the Vancouver and Okanagan campuses – visit

Arig al Shaibah, PhD 

Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusion

“It is absolutely imperative that every human being’s freedom and human rights are respected, all over the world.”

– Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir