Every City Needs a Trans Awareness Campaign Like this One

Vancouver is consistently named one of the most livable cities in the world, and its Park Board recently launched a program that’s making it even more appealing.

Hillcrest Community Centre, built during the 2010 Winter Olympic Games, became host this week to a series of posters raising awareness about the trans community and issues facing trans people. The program was developed after a 2014 report from the city’s Trans* and Gender Variant Working Group offered suggestions for ways to make public spaces more inclusive and accessible to trans and gender-variant folks.

Said Park Board chair John Coupar, “At its heart it’s about making everyone feel comfortable and welcome at our community centers.”

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Alongside the posters, the community center has unveiled new restroom signage that features trans-inclusive imagery—no “woman in triangle-shaped dress” or “man in pants” here.  Said Jazmine Khan, who is featured in the city’s posters,

It feels fulfilling to know I finally have a place. I don’t have to be shamed and ridiculed for going into women’s change rooms just because I don’t have the parts.

The city also began offering a trans-inclusive swim at another community center earlier this year, and will continue implementing longer-term recommendations from the 2014 report with input from a new Trans* and Gender-Variant Implementation Steering Committee.

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About

Stephanie hails from Toronto, Canada. She is a Ms. writer, a Master of Journalism candidate and a hip hop dancer/instructor/choreographer. She got her start in feminist journalism at the age of 16 when she was a member of the first editorial collective at Shameless magazine—and she has never looked back.