Dublin Trans and Intersex Pride sees huge crowds line streets demanding an end to violence
Dublin Trans and Intersex Pride returned with its largest crowd yet marching through the capital for equality and liberation.
As many as 2,000 people marched on Saturday (17 July), according to the Irish Independent, with trans and intersex people and their allies demanding better access to healthcare and an end to transphobia.
Ahead of the march, LGBTQ+ activist Izzy Kamikaze spoke to the crowd outside the gates of the Garden of Remembrance.
Kamikaze said: “I was proud to participate in the first Dublin Trans Pride, and the pride I feel in having been there is just as important to me as my pride in having been part of the Fairview Park march [Ireland’s first-ever gay rights protest, held after the murder of gay man Declan Flynn], 39 years ago.”
“When we march today we are making history, just as we made history back then.”
Lilith Ferreyra-Carroll from TENI spoke on the growing presence of transphobic groups in Ireland.
“Transphobic groups in recent weeks have intensified their ongoing campaigns of misinformation, division and hate, and our media has shamefully played their part in the name of balance, debate, concerns,” Ferreyra-Carroll said.
She added the trans community is “strong” and “will never go away”.
“Trans people of Ireland – the people of Ireland – have responded resoundingly that intolerance will not be tolerated. Trans and non-binary people are our friends and family.”
National broadcaster RTE was called out over its recent platforming of anti-trans voices. Dublin Pride cut ties with the broadcaster in June over “extremely harmful anti-trans rhetoric” broadcast on RTE Radio One’s LiveLine with Joe Duffy
“Transphobia ruins lifes. RTE apologise,” crowds chanted.
Many speakers reflected on the shocking murders of two gay men in Sligo, Aidan Moffitt and Micheal Snee, in April.
Delroy Mpofu, from TENI, also paid tribute to Sylva Tukula, a trans woman who died while living in an only-male direct provision centre and was buried without her friends being notified about the funeral in August 2018.
Olive Wilson, Intersex Ireland founding member, spoke of how intersex people make up two per cent of the population and are virtually invisible.
Wilson said despite being a “tiny minority”, the community deserves bodily integrity. She added IGM should be considerered a crime just as female genital mutilation is considered.
“Intersex children and babies are given no legal protection against [IGM]. Intersex parents experience pressure to change their babies’ bodies,” she told the mass of people. “It is a long term mistake and the implications are fairly awful for that person for the rest of their life.”
As Ireland celebrated Traveller Pride Week, Mary McDonagh of the National Action Group for LGBT+ Traveller and Roma Rights spoke on the need to protect young queer members of the communities.
Others highlighted Ireland’s inaccessible trans healthcare, known for its six year waiting list and its highly intrusive questions about patients’ porn habits and personal sexual preferences. The “failing” system has pushed many trans people to undertake private treatment or seek it abroad.
They also called for a strict ban on conversion therapy, something the government has vowed to enact.
The march included representatives from Mammies for Trans Rights, Dublin Lesbian Line, Irish Furries, Amnesty Ireland and many more. Political parties also joined, including People Before Profit, Social Democrats and representatives from Sinn Fein.
Its route spanned O’Connell Street, made its way across the bridge and winded past Trinity College before stopping onto Merrion Square outside the Department of the Taoiseach.
Chants calling for better trans healthcare, an end to intersex genital mutilation (IGM) and an end to transphobia filled the air as onlookers clapped and waved in support.
Banners were dotted among the crowd, with messages including “Pride is a protest, “No Pride under pink profit”, “No world without trans”, “Trans rights are human rights” and “Trans murders are political”.
To close off the march, Dublin Trans and Intersex Pride organiser Ollie Bell said the anti-capitalist protest was proud to take place again in what has been a worrying period of time for LGBTQ+ rights.
“Although we see so much progress in Ireland with marriage equality and repeal, we still have so much more to fight for,” they said.
“Capitalism is a system that breeds inequality and perpetrates a system that is incapable of ending inequality and violence. And, we have seen an increase in violence against our community.”
Drawing attention to a recent attack at Dublin Pride which resulted in a trans person being hospitalised with a fractured skull, they said people will have to come together to end the violence.
“The amount of people that are with us today and the amount of people that have joined the march and cheering on for us shows there is support for trans and intersex people,” Bell said.
Lucy O’Connor, 21, travelled from Mayo for her first Dublin Trans and Intersex Pride. She told PinkNews: “It’s just so nice to see everyone here and to feel that support. Being trans and coming out has been so hard but I know this community is always here for me.”
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