Wish April Ashley a happy 80th birthday

On Wednesday 29th April, Liverpool born April Ashley, trans icon, model,  actress and advocate,  will celebrate her 80th birthday. We at Liverpool Trans adore her and would like to let her know just how much she means to us and to our little community.

To mark this fabulous occasion we thought we’d ask you dear reader, to leave a message for April, wish her a happy birthday and let her know what she means to you. We’ll compile all your lovely messages and present them to her personally (more info to follow soon!), we’ll also share as many of your wonderful messages as we can online!

April8003April8004   April8002   April8001

If you want to share your messages with us on Twitter and Facebook use hashtag #April80

If you don’t know April, we insist you get to know her!

Leave your messages below and our little team at Liverpool Trans will do the rest!

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Liverpool Trans at Reclaim the Night

Reclaim the Night campaigns for an end to Violence Against Women, challenging street harassment and ending rape culture. On the 24th April 2015 100 women marched through the streets of Liverpool, loud and proud.

The Rallying point included a host of wonderful women speakers and performers, among them was Sophie Green who proudly spoke on behalf of Transgender Day of remembrance. This is her full speech.

Transgender Day of Remembrance is held annually on the 20th November.

Across the world candlelit vigils and events are held to remember those lives that have been lost; killed due to transphobic violence and discrimination. Transgender communities and their allies came together across the globe to read the names of the dead and honour their passing.

If I wasn’t being objectified with unwanted attention from guys in clubs because I was trans, then I might be subjected to a bit of transphobic abuse on the way home.

Last year Liverpool marked the day with several events, among them there were talks at the Museum of Liverpool’s April Ashley archive; and the raising of the Transgender Pride flag by members of the trans community above Liverpool Town Hall.

In St John’s Gardens, people gathered to read aloud the names of the 270 transgender people whose lives were known to have been lost due to transphobic violence.

Reclaim the night

Being transgender can place you on the furthest fringe of society, experiencing high levels of discrimination. A lack of legal protections aside, many counties have no adequate gender recognition laws and little or no trans specific health care. Without family or financial support how do you successfully transition and allow yourself to flourish?

In the United States transgender women of colour continue to be the victims of murder and violence.

  • Of the 14 US transgender murders reported 10 were trans women of color.
  • 40% of all LGBT US murders were of trans women.
  • 15 of those murdered were trans women under the age of 19.
  • Brazil, rife with transphobia, accounted for 58% of all reported trans murders.
  • Closer to home, recorded hate crimes in England and Wales for 2013/14 show a 54% increase in transgender hate crime.

So what can happen when you fight back?

Trans woman Cece Mcdonald and her friends were subjected to a transphobic and racist attack in her hometown of Minneapolis. Following a verbal assault, Cece was struck in the face with glass, When Cece tried to run her assailant chased her. Scared for her life Cece pulled a pair of scissors from her bag stabbing the man in the chest, killing him.

Cece didn’t fit the standard narrative, she survived; on any other day she would have been another name to the TDOR role call. But she stood her ground, refusing to die. For fighting back Cece served 19 months for manslaughter, in a men’s prison.

The names recorded for #TDOR are the tip of the iceberg. Many more murders are unreported, and others victims not identified as trans in reports, or whose trans identities have been erased in the wake of their deaths, as was the case with transgender teen Leeah Alcorn.

Leelah Alcorn was raised in a conservative Christian household in Ohio. At age 14 Leelah came out as transgender to her parents, who refused to accept her female gender identity. At 16 the denied her request to undergo transition treatment, instead sending her to Christian conversion therapy.

With a lack of family support, and seeing no future for herself, Leelah took her own life.

Leelah’s suicide note soon went viral, and her family quickly stepped in to remove her blog and with it her trans identity.

Without the pixies of the internet saving her blog and re-posting, Leelah’s whole trans history, her identity, her calls for acceptance and support for others like her could have been lost. How many other trans lives have been erased like this?

Growing up I didn’t know who I was; I didn’t know the word transgender and I certainly didn’t know anyone like me.

I saw approximations of people I thought were like me, caricatures on television, punchlines in newspapers, the message I was getting about trans was not good. The media’s representations of trans women were as punchlines, perverts, or deceivers, people to be mocked. Trans women were viewed as mocking femininity and to be avoided at all costs.

I was a scared teen; I didn’t want anyone to know I was one of those people so I hid myself from the world, I was suffocating as I let life go on around me.

The weight of gender dysphoria eventually became so great that for me it was transition or……I’d exhausted my options, and transition was the only I could see myself having any kind of a future.

Many trans women are particularly visible at the beginning of their transitions, lack of confidence in your appearance to ‘pass’ and the absence of girlhood experience makes the world an incredibly scary place to be, you have to push yourself out of the door every day.

I found myself in potentially dangerous situations to feel validated as female. If I wasn’t being objectified with unwanted attention from guys in clubs because I was trans, then I might be subjected to a bit of transphobic abuse on the way home. I placed little value on who I was. I had been conditioned to believe that nobody would want a relationship with a trans girl and I should be grateful for any affection I could get.

It took years for me to truly find myself, to accept myself and to begin to love myself.

We are beginning to move forward. I now find myself in a place where the transgender movement is gathering momentum with more and more trans identified people standing up and sharing their stories, supporting and empowering each other. We stand on the shoulders of giants, brave pioneers, and now we are beginning to tell our stories and write our own histories.

With each advance, we gain more allies, and more informed voices to effect a positive change. I’m involved in workshops in schools and am amazed when the kids tell me what transgender means, there’s a long way to go for acceptance, but it’s incredibly encouraging.

Being visibly transgender isn’t an option for everyone, but for those that are able, transgender visibility creates empathy and that leads to acceptance, it’s a positive thing for everybody. Changing societies attitudes is key to winning rights and penalising those who try to hurt us, the trans movement needs its allies!

Ultimately, I’ve come to realise that with the right support to help you through, there is nothing wrong with being Trans.

It’s other people that try to make it a problem.



Sophie Green



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Transition Without Destination

My heart sometimes falls when I hear the word “transition”. Often because, to many people, it represents a medical transition, with a clear end point. It’s almost as much of an oversimplification as condensing the whole of trans experience into one magical “op”.

I am nonbinary, and have chosen not to transition medically. Just writing that, I feel an overwhelming need to explain myself, to prove myself trans enough to be part of this community.

Yes, I experience dysphoria. No, I don’t have an underlying condition that makes medical transition impossible. No, I absolutely do not represent other nonbinary people in feeling this way; in fact I know of at least one binary trans person who has chosen not to have any medical intervention. For me, it is nothing more than an utterly personal decision, based on the circumstances of my life as I see it.

Two years ago, I sought referral to the GIC. I was referred to a mental health professional for screening, after which I was told it would be straightforward enough to send me on. Two days before my screening, my father attempted suicide. In tears, I explained the situation to the receptionist, who booked me another appointment for three months later. Not having my own car, I asked my then partner to give me a lift. He explained that he did not feel that then was the right time. I realise now that he meant for him, not for me.

In short, my brief attempt to take the standard route did not work out. Looking back, I’m still not sure how I feel about this. My life was taken out of my hands by two people who claimed to love me, and yet acted, for whatever reason, with utter selfishness. Yet I have little desire to try again.

There is no “passing” or “living stealth” as nonbinary

Why not? It makes my life harder than it needs to be. I devote time and money to disguising my decidedly binary body. Even amongst trans people, I live in a permanent state of prepubescence. New acquaintances offer up words of wisdom: “Once you start to transition…”

I started my transition four years ago. I’m not exactly an old hand, but I’ve at least got to the point where misgendering confuses, rather than upsets me. So being tucked under someone’s admittedly well-meaning wing tends to grate.

So why stay as I am? Simply put, because changing my body will not change the way people see me.

My transition has no endgame. I live for those rare, beautiful moments where someone recognises that I am outside the binary.

“Can I see your ticket, young man?” asked a train conductor recently, before correcting himself, “Sorry, young… whatever.”

“Young whatever’s about right,” I smiled, and he reciprocated as he clipped my ticket.

The absurdity of that little exchange is not lost on me. For almost anyone else, that would be a terrible moment, and yet it absolutely made my day. Because it’s sickeningly rare.

There is no “passing” or “living stealth” as nonbinary. Most people have an overwhelming need to fit complete strangers into neat little pink and blue boxes. Yet, how can I blame them? Everything about the society we live in is so rigidly binary. Forget passports, nonbinary folk can’t even get a Tesco Clubcard! And don’t get me started on Kinder eggs.

Shaving my ridiculous peach fuzz every week is a five minute job. Binding is sweaty and stifling, but very rarely painful. Trying to work out which bathroom I can use in safety? That is my day to day.

The one time I tried to come out to a potential employer, she asked me to stand up and turn around so that she could better see the fit of my binder. She said that she’d have to speak to her business partner about whether or not they could employ me; I never heard from her again.

So for now my focus is on being visible. I’ve had my little victories- I asked National Rail to give the option of a gender neutral title on railcards, and they did. I can’t say for sure that I’ll never try my hand again at the GIC, though their poor track record with nonbinary patients is astonishing. I just know for me, right now, it’s not important.

So, just think the next time you use the word “transition”, and see if it’s really what you mean.

Parker Dell

Parker Dell

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The power of #TDOV and living visibly

Yesterday was Transgender Day of Visibility, an event held annually on March 31st celebrating the lives of transgender people. It’s intention is to applaud achievements of the trans* community while also highlighting the many issues and prejudices it faces.

Liverpool Trans contribution to #TDOV was to create a profile picture upload tool so people could show their support for #TDOV across social media. We were optimistic that we’d get a bit of interest, it was a fun, it was engaging and it was a positive way to show support for what was a relatively new event.

Amazed to say since launching on Monday, there have been over 1500 profile pictures created. Some we’ve uploaded and on our Facebook Page we’re sharing our favourite #TDOV pictures and asking community members to nominate their own trans* visibility icons.

Janet TDOV Geena TDOV Kate TDOV

Last night we frantically tweeted, messaging our way to some of the trans communities finest, with contributions from author and TV Host Janet Mock, author and performer ‘Aunty’ Kate Bornstein (in a rather fetching Grey Fez) and model and Genderproud advocate Geena Rocero. It’s fair to say we were giddy as love struck teenagers to have them involved.

Representation came from writers, artists, DJs, film makers, actors, models, Army, Navy, Air Force, presenters, teachers, performers, government, engineers, singers, athletes, tutors & students. Transgender people getting their voices heard, their stories are shared, building a more understanding society.

Heartfelt thanks and pride to everyone that made this happen.

This is a bit special…

TDOV composite 800px

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Transgender Day of Visibility

Tuesday 31st March is Transgender Day of Visibility, an international event that annually promotes trans* visibility as empowerment.

International Transgender Day of Visibility is a day to visibly celebrate being transgender and for allies to show their support for the transgender community.

Be visible and create your very own #TDOV profile picture, email or tweet them to us and we’ll be sure to share. Chose your file > make your pic > your profile pic should download automatically 🙂

Get your face out there, promote #TDOV and inspire!

*Update* We’ve blogged about the day here and over on our Facebook Page we’re reposting some of our favourites images.


Upload your picture (500px x 500px works best!)

Now click the button and your pic should download!

Send us your pic and we’ll add to the gallery!

Rebecca TDOV Janet TDOV Hannah TDOV Sophie Green Dan TDOR IMG_0904    Megan tdov 11101758_436083936551494_1642316400_n  Jacqui TDOR Ian TDOV Rachel TDOV Vikki TDOV Emma TDOV Cheryl TDOVPhillipa TDOV  Susie tdov WOT MD TDOV  Kate TDOV Geena TDOV Maria TDOV Lewis TDOV  Leng TDOV Kate TDOV  CBdLTCZU8AE0Ntt Buck TDOV Ann TDOV Surat TDOV Ina TDOV Anette TDOV Xenia TDOV Tara TDOV Stacie TDOV Octavian TDOV Nikki TDOV Myriam TDOV Luka TDOV Henry TDOV Hayden TDOVChloie TDOV CBcpEw7WUAMjVxH Carol TDOV Bethany TDOV Ben TDOV Andrew TDOV Amber TDOV Aaron TDOV Xenia TDOV Luka TDOV  Alec TDOV CBbiyntUsAAm8XJ Will TDOV Sophie TDOV Robyn TDOV Nicole TDOV Kris TDOV jack tdov Felix TDOV Chrissy TDOV Bronwyn TDOV  Felix TDOV Chrissy TDOV Louise TDOV Gillian TDOV Georgia TDOV Emma TDOV Surat TDOV Sam TDOV Pauline TDOV Kate TDOV Heloise TDOV Evie TDOV Courtney TDOV Thom TDOV Steve TDOV Sam TDOV Michelle-Louise Maria TDOV Julianna TDOV CBYwn2RWcAAmBTY Rachel TDOV TJ TDOV Leng TDOV KT TDOV Jenny Anne TDOV Harley TDOV Emma TDOV Chris TDOV Alan TDOV Jace TDOV William TDOV Sarah TDOV Rachel TDOV Melanie TDOV Kris TDOV Kate TDOV Chrissie TDOV Victoria TDOV Rachel TDOV Natalie TDOV Emma TDOV Elliot TDOV Tara TDOV Sarah Jane TDOV Kieron TDOV Cindy TDOV christine_tdov15 Lisa TDOV Jennie TDOV Veronica TDOV Susan TDOV photo Janet TDOV TDOV profile Melanie TDOV Rebecca TDOV Nata TDOV Zena TDOV Sophie TDOV Ryan TDOV Joanna TDOV Ben TDOV Sean TDOV Nick TDOV Nana TDOV Gemma TDOV Juno TDOV Joss TDOV Jane TDOV Sophie TDOV Lily Ellen TDOV Caroline TDOV Amber TDOV Alex TDOV Helen TDOV Tanya TDOV Sarah TDOV Sarah TDOV Joseph TDOV Shannon TDOV Justine TDOV Kirsty TDOV Ayla TDOV saku TDOV Twitter TDOV Stephanie TDOV Fox TDOV

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Welcome to Liverpool Trans!

Hello and welcome to Liverpool Trans! This website has been created to share positive stories about trans people, their experiences, and the wider trans community.

As Transgender Day of Visibility (31st March) is fast approaching, we thought it would be fitting for our first blog to talk about the importance of positive visibility in the trans community.

Trans media stories have seen a dramatic rise in coverage over the last couple of years, and at last, it’s starting to look positive!

For literally decades, the majority of trans media coverage had always been deliberately abusive and mocking of the trans community, providing inaccurate information and enforcing negative stereotypes (you only have to do a quick online search to unearth some of the car-crash articles that have previously been in the tabloid press).

Thankfully, we’re now beginning to see lots of positive, and more importantly, truthful pieces being written both by and about trans people. The rise of social media as a platform for activism has allowed trans people, who previously may have been isolated by society, to connect with each other and voice their frustration with the negativity and abuse of trans people within the media. This has also been recognised by a number of groups in the UK such as Trans Media Watch; a charity aimed at improving media coverage for trans and intersex people, and most recently All About Trans; a fabulous project which has been helping to increase the media’s understanding of trans people and issues to create more positive and sensitive trans portrayals.

We’re also seeing the emergence of many prominent trans figures speaking publicly against transphobia which has been invaluable for increasing trans awareness and visibility. Some of which are becoming household names, such as Laverne Cox; an American actress and LGBT advocate, most notably starring in the comedy-drama series ‘Orange Is The New Black’, and Paris Lees; a UK journalist and activist who has wrote for The Independent, The Guardian, DIVA, Vice and Attitude Magazine.

More locally, Liverpool has come on in leaps and bounds for trans awareness and visibility. Over the past couple of years the trans community has had a growing presence at Liverpool Pride, and last summer marked the first trans inclusive community space. Trans youth have also been given a voice, with the launch of ‘By The Way’; an online resource made by and for gender variant youth in Liverpool which has been used in various schools across Merseyside. We’ve also seen the launch of ‘THE Action Youth’, a brand new trans youth group held within YPAS (Young Person’s Advisory Service).

On a larger scale, the city was given an amazing opportunity of hosting the ‘April Ashley: Portrait of a Lady’ exhibition at the Museum of Liverpool in partnership with Homotopia. The exhibition which ended in March, featured an archive of April’s life and transition, along with a timeline of legislative change for trans people. The archive was visited by over 930,000 visitors in 17 months. That’s 930,000 people who now have a broader understanding and awareness of what it means to be trans!

We’ve still got a long way to go to in improving trans equality and we believe that positive visibility is going to be key. We’ll have a wide range of guest bloggers from across the community posting on our blog, however if you would like to get involved and make positive change we would love to hear from you! To contribute, please send your submissions via our contact page.

Dan Stone

Dan Stone

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