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MPR Friday blog 26/03/21

Wednesday 31 March is Transgender Day of Visibility (TDOV).

It’s a day at the station we are keen to mark as, in the struggle for trans rights, visibility has become all important. Now it is important to note that not all transgender people can be visible, there are many reasons such as work, family, etc that it is not possible to come out, and even for those of us who are out, visibility can often be a scary thing.

This week I was invited to help my childhood club AFC Wimbledon with their new initiative to show the range of diversity their fans represent. I jumped at the chance to help for several reasons not least of which was the chance to have a nose around the brand new stadium at Plough Lane.

I’m not going to lie I was terrified, dysphoria always seems to grip at just the wrong time, but the club staff especially Mandy and Jane could not have been kinder, and yes I got to have a guided snoop around. Being a brand new stadium it has been built with many things in mind including a  family area and access with specialist bath rooms for those who need extra room or whose needs might normally prevent them from something that we take as simple such as watching a sporting event.

The club have really thought about making sure everyone can be included in watching AFC scrap to stay out of the relegation zone (lots of finger crossing in the coming weeks), and that is what I, and others were there to do, celebrate the wonderful diversity that there is.

On the drive home with TDOV a week away I could not help but think that the positive change whether it is in language or practical like making sure you allow for access for everyone starts with visibility, it doesn’t need to be everyone just a few and that can be enough to start changes. So to those celebrating TDOV whether visible of not, we know you are there, you are valued, and tune in on the 31st for some messages from or friends and allies.

Shea

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