Some died at the hands of strangers; others were killed by the family members who should have cherished them the most. Some were murdered because they were openly or obviously living as a transgendered person; others were murdered because they weren’t.

The stories of some 300 transgendered people from around the world, all of whom died as a result of violence inflicted upon them, were shared and honoured in a moving ceremony at the Gender Centre last Thursday. The event was held as part of an international day of remembrance for the victims of violence against transgendered people.

Gender Centre social and support worker Grace Abrams told Sydney Star Observer the stories ranged from infants killed by their parents, to transgender adults who were refused treatment in hospitals and have died as a consequence.

The brutality of the murders, Abrams said, really shows the attitude of large tracts of society towards transgendered people just trying to live their lives in peace.

The walls of the Gender Centre were covered with the stories and, in some cases, the photos of transgendered people murdered for being who they were -“ including a few people from Sydney.

One can’t help but be struck by the extreme violence of so many of these attacks, Abrams said. We’ve adorned the walls of the Centre and invited the public to come and look at them and feel some of the outrage that we do in encountering the prejudice and misunderstanding and the violence perpetrated against so many of us out in the world. And yet it seems to cause hardly a ripple in most of the media. Today’s the day we recognise these people and their lives and the consequences they suffered for being themselves.

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