by Avery Nguyen | July 5, 2017

We’re Still Here, We’re Still Struggling, and We’re Still Fighting: Reflections from Trans March

Group of APIENC-affiliated folks posing on a street corner with fists up and holding up signs at this year's Trans March
Group of APIENC-affiliated folks posing on a street corner with fists up and holding up signs at this year’s Trans March

This past month, APIENC, along with Gabriela-SF, ieumsae, and VietUnity organized a trans, queer, and allied Asian and Pacific Islander Contingent for Trans March. Our contingent was 200+ people strong. Avery, core member of APIENC’s Trans Justice Working Group and part of the community safety security team at this year’s Trans March, reflects on why it is important to them to march every year.

Trans March has always been the only piece of Pride celebrations that I look forward to. The parade and the parties stress me out because they don’t feel like they’re for the queer community, especially the most vulnerable of us within that community. So many amazing people are doing the work of organizing and supporting the livelihoods of TGNC (transgender and gender non-conforming), black and brown communities, and struggle to help us get free.

Trans March feels like the space where we can acknowledge that work being done every other month out of the year. The parties and parade—with corporate sponsorship, increasing flashiness, and gimmicks—don’t uplift that work. At Trans March we can show up and say, “we’re still here, we’re still struggling, and we’re still fighting.”

This year was only my second Trans March and it was again a beautiful experience. But, it felt very different because I was part of the security team for our contingent. It was incredibly rewarding to be trained as part of the team keeping us safe, if only for those couple of hours. Police were present alongside the march, but being able to act as mitigator between them and our people was empowering.

I’m looking forward to marching with my TGNC family as long as I can, because at the end of that day, I know we’re doing all we can to support each other’s healing and liberation. I feel the community, I feel the joy when we’re in streets together.

Avery Nguyen is a queer and trans descendant of the Vietamerican diaspora, hanging on by a thread to their first home, San Francisco. They are the sugar uncle to three dog nephews, and are currently trying to find their place in the movement. You can read more about Avery here.