Trans community “Won’t Be Erased” in Tucson

Transgender rights rally

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Crowds cheered, chanted and waved signs on all four corners of a busy intersection in downtown Tucson Monday evening.

The “Won’t Be Erased” rallies in support of the transgender community were organized in cities across the country, in response to a reported plan by the Trump administration to rollback protections for trans people.

Abby Jensen, Vice President and General Counsel for the Southern Arizona Gender Alliance, said the latest news from the White House wasn’t a surprise, but she said it didn’t make it any less painful. She said the fight for equal rights will not stop.

“No matter what the federal government does, we will still be here,” she said. “It’s really just a question of what our rights are going to be and how hard we’re going to have to fight for those rights.”

Lizette Trujillo, mother to a trans child, echoed Jensen’s belief that Tucson is a supportive environment for the trans community. However, she worried that Monday’s rally might not attract much public attention. She said those worries left as soon as she saw all the smiling people at the intersection of Broadway and Granada.

“A lot of us begin this journey thinking that we’re the only one with a trans child,” she said. “Our children are really, really special, brave little people who are just being true to themselves....to know them is to love them.”

Jensen said she was moved by the number of allies in the crowds Monday. Among them was Kelly Fryer, CEO of the YWCA Southern Arizona. She said the diverse crowd on the sidewalks of downtown Tucson sends a positive message to people all over the state.

“I think it gives, especially young people in our state, a real sense of hope and possibility,” she said. “It helps them know they’re loved.”

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