PACT was proud to be represented at the inaugural Africa Trans Visibility Day, held on 05 December 2015 at Constitution Hill, and organised by Iranti-Org.
In attendance were trans people from throughout the region, as well as allies. In addition, numerous organisations and NGOs were present, including GenderDynamiX, SWEAT, Rainbow Identity, CtrlAltGender, and many others.
Activists from Uganda, Namibia, Zimbabwe and Lesotho, as well as South Africa were present, and contributed to discussions on trans experiences across different parts of the continent, sharing their stories, challenges and ideas.
Discussing healthcare issues for trans patients, and representing PACT, was Dr Anastacia Tomson, who emphasised that healthcare for trans individuals involves more than simply hormones and HRT. She emphasised the importance of holistic healthcare that follows a biopsychosocial approach, and insisted that trans patients should enjoy the same access to healthcare as cisgender patients.
Following her presentation, Anastacia fielded questions from the audience. She discussed the dangers of self-medication, and some of the side effects of HRT for trans patients, as well as pointing out that HIV+ trans people can simultaneously use antiretroviral medications (ARVs) together with their hormone therapy. She also touched on the idea that non-binary patients are also able to transition, as well as stressing the idea that medical intervention is not needed to validate trans identities, and calling on professionals to use their resources to fight the scourge of transphobia, in the healthcare sector as well as other focus areas.
The day progressed with entertainment and more panel discussions and performances from African trans activists.
PACT was glad to be part of a successful first Africa Trans Visibility Day, and hopes that this endeavour will continue to grow in strength in the future.