This following is a news release from the Gender Justice League.
In a groundbreaking decision on June 25, 2014, the Washington State Office of Insurance Commissioner announced that insurance companies can no longer discriminate against transgender Washingtonians. This ruling sets a huge precedent for health equity and clarifies that transgender healthcare exclusions are no longer permissible in Washington state. This victory is a huge accomplishment for The Coalition for Inclusive Healthcare and the Gender Justice League!
To commemorate the incredible organizing power of the trans*, gender non-conforming, and allied community, Mayor Ed Murray, Seattle’s first openly gay mayor, will present a Proclamation from the City of Seattle at Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 at Cal Anderson Park in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood. In addition, the Gender Justice League will bestow an Ally Appreciation Award to veteran, San Francisco performer, Heklina Heklina of T-Shack and Seattle’s own Mama Tits for their contributions to the trans* and LGBTQ community as models of allyship in the midst of the complex conversation around the t-word.
On Friday, June 27, 2014, Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 celebrates this victory and organizes for more work ahead. Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 builds on the momentum of Trans* Pride 2013, the second largest Trans* Pride in the country with 2,200+ Trans* and allied participants.
The march begins at 6 p.m. on Friday, June 27 on Broadway in front of Seattle Central Community College, then goes south to Pike, then East to 11th Ave E., and continues toward Cal Anderson Park for a rally and celebration. Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 is a smoke-free, scent-free event and will include ASL interpretation and a reserved area for people with wheelchairs and other mobility assistance devices. There will also be a resource fair and three local food trucks: Charlie’s Buns, Chopstix and Flair Tacos.
Gender Justice League enthusiastically welcomes nationally renowned Trans* speakers, queer musical guests, and SPECIAL Trans* Pride parties and celebrations. Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 welcomes CeCe McDonald, frequent speaker alongside Laverne Cox of Orange is the New Black, and author Janet Mock. CeCe is an outspoken activist around the experiences of trans* women and incarceration – especially trans women of color. She was arrested for the death of her transphobic attacker and sentenced to 41 months in prison. Currently, she is free and works to expand the narrative around trans* women beyond outdated stereotypes and narratives.
“Trans* women are women. Trans* men are men. There’s no distinguishing between a ‘real’ woman and a trans* woman. The problem,” explains McDonald, is that “trans people are seen as objects or props, and people don’t attach the humanity to us and the things we go through.”1
Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 and Gender Justice League hopes to attach humanity to the trans* community, and allow the whole community to see each other authentically. In addition, Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 welcomes Kai M. Green, writer, poet, and filmmaker of It Gets Messy in Here. His work centers on trans* men and masculine identified women of color.
Finally, Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 welcomes Elena Rose (Rose) a mixed-race, mixed-class mestiza writer, religious scholar, and artist currently attending seminary in Northern California, whose forthcoming book, Mountain of Myrrh, is set to be released by Dinah Press. Additionally, Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 features The Nasty Habits, a punk-pop-glam group playing music from the 80s and 90s with an edge and energy as well as music by DJ Trinitron.
Trans* Pride Seattle 2014, a Pride event organized by Gender Justice League, energizes the Trans* movement for more gender justice and connects racial justice, disability justice, economic justice, immigration justice, and more because Trans* people are not of a single identity or movement. The collaboration between community groups and sponsors indicates a commitment to building community across movements. Most importantly, Trans* Pride Seattle seeks to break the isolation so the whole community can see each other more fully and authentically. Building empathy and connecting neighbors, allies, and trans* folks is imperative to dismantling barriers to access, health, and a happy life.
The primary sponsor and organizer of Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 is Gender Justice League, a nonprofit formed by a group of local transgender activists and their allies. Their mission is to advocate for Seattle’s growing transgender and gender-nonconforming community. Trans* Pride Seattle 2014 is an important way for Gender Justice League and the trans* community to elevate issues trans* people face while celebrating our beautiful trans* communities, and to motivate and excite people about changing the climate for trans* people in Washington state.
Additional sponsors include: Gay City Health Project and #myhivmoment, League at AT&T, Greater Seattle Business Association, Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce, Pride Foundation, Social Justice Fund NW, Capitol Hill Community Council, Capitol Hill Housing, Caffe Vita, Molly Moon’s Ice Cream, Seattle Gay News, and The Seattle Lesbian.