Hundreds of Montrealers protest systemic transphobia in Quebec

Members of the LGBTQIA+ community staged a demonstration during the city’s Pride week

A protester holds a trans flag with “protect trans lives” written on it. Photo Sophie Dufresne
Demonstrators walk down Ontario St. waving their signs. Photo Sophie Dufresne
Organizer Celeste Trianon speaks to the crowd at Parc de l’espoir. Photo Sophie Dufresne
Protesters hold flags as they stop at an intersection. Photo Sophie Dufresne
One of the protest’s main demands is stopping trans erasure in the healthcare system. Photo Sophie Dufresne
Speakers take to the microphone in front of the crowd. Photo Sophie Dufresne
A protester holds up a sign that reads “cis-heteropatriachy kills.” Photo Sophie Dufresne
Trianon leads hundreds of protesters across town. Photo Sophie Dufresne
Two protesters hold hands as they walk across The Village. Photo Sophie Dufresne
One demonstrator carries a drawing of a heart in the trans pride colours. Photo Sophie Dufresne
“This T isn’t silent,” reads one of the protest signs. Photo Sophie Dufresne
Hundreds of demonstrators made their way from The Village to the Palais de justice. Photo Sophie Dufresne

Protester Vanessa took a big step in her transition on Aug. 6: she announced to her friends and family on Facebook she is a transgender woman. 

That same day, she was met with thunderous applause when she shared her story at the 2022 Trans March for Our Liberation.

“Coming out is possible, being yourself is possible, and I hope my story can give you all hope,” Vanessa said to the hundreds of queer and trans Montrealers cheering her on.

The march was organized by several grassroots transgender activists across the city. It was meant to honour the radical roots of Pride and spotlight ongoing trans, non-binary and queer-related issues in the province, organizer Celeste Trianon said.

Trianon spent the past two weeks pooling together resources to make the demonstration a reality. “I put in 120—maybe 140 hours—during the last nine days,” she said. “It really is a full community event.”

Speeches took place at around 6:45 p.m. at the Parc de l’espoir in The Village and lasted until 7:20 p.m., when the march began.

Trianon stated the protest’s primary demands, the most urgent being healthcare. “We need trans healthcare to become universally accessible and for there to be less medical gatekeeping.” She would also like to see transphobic and trans-exclusionary groups defunded by the provincial government.

“We need people in positions of power to publicly adopt a trans-affirming approach as its sole approach to trans healthcare,” Trianon added.

Québec solidaire co-spokesperson Manon Massé was present, representing her district of Sainte-Marie–Saint-Jacques, where the march was taking place. 

“Good on you all for getting together to fight against the politicians who don’t want you to be who you are. I want to let you know, you have allies,” Massé told the crowd.

The protesters made their way through the core of the city, eventually reaching the Palais de justice by approximately 8:45 p.m., where more speeches took place.