NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – In Northampton Saturday, people came out to show solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, in a march that focused on black trans people and the LGBTQ community.
Demonstrators gathered at Sheldon Field then marched down to Northampton City Hall where a silent reading was held of local black trans lives lost to racism and transphobia.
“We owe where we are now to those people and I think because of their marginalized identity they are often erased from that history,” march organizer Faolain Bobersky told 22News. “So this march, in particular, is drawing attention to the people who did the work and continue to do the work that everybody else is benefiting from.”
Organizers told 22News, black trans women are and continue to be the pioneers of the LGBTQ rights movement and gay liberation, and suffer ongoing police violence. Speakers at the rally told the demonstrators that this isn’t just a moment and the momentum of the movement needs to keep going.
“It’s been a movement since we were brought over in slave ships, it’s been a movement since the end to slavery in 1863, it’s been a movement since the civil rights,” Melacia Delgado said. “It’s always gonna be a movement, it’s either you move with it or you move out.”
Saturday’s peaceful event was also marked by the giving of flowers, a reading of a Maya Angelou poem, and group activities including a chalk mural.
All proceeds collected at the march will be donated to the Trans Asylum Seekers Network as well as other organizations.