It’s time for change – a call to the TGEU community to demand transparency and justice

We invite all members of TGEU and our communities to work together to make TGEU an organization where racism, abuse, and silencing are unacceptable.

Yesterday, Trans Network Balkan participated in the TGEU Extraordinary General Assembly. Yesterday we witnessed the validation and even a return of harmful attitudes such as racism and a culture of power abuse to TGEU. We witnessed the validation of rumors over evidence, of politics over compassion. We watched members and candidates leave because the EGA was inaccessible, and we felt the emptiness that should have been filled by over 150 organizations and as many individual members. Many could not afford to pay to have their voices heard, or could not attend the EGA session live or online. We are deeply concerned, but we are not done.

We still believe that justice is possible, and that our communities deserve to be made fully aware of all the facts relating to the conflicts in TGEU. We demand that all the relevant reports and investigations are shared with the membership to the fullest extent possible, while protecting the privacy of individuals. We further demand that the exiting Board is held responsible for any and all of their actions which may have violated the Statutes and/or the legal and human rights of any member of TGEU. We also demand full transparency from the Interim Board in dealing with the conflicts that they stepped up to tackle, and we believe that the membership will support the efforts of the new Board if the Board members demonstrate a dedication to the values and wellbeing of our communities.

Those elected to represent the will and the best interests of our communities are elected to serve, and we will hold them up to this. We believe that the voices of our communities must be heard by the Board – those who look down upon their communities are looking upside down.

Trans Network Balkan stands in solidarity with all those who were harmed by racism and abuse of power which, unfortunately, still has a stronghold in TGEU. We stand in solidarity with those who were subjected to a public hate campaign and demonized despite the evidence to the contrary, and we deeply honor them for persevering and continuing to serve their communities while enduring daily cruelty and abuse. We honor those who carried the work of many on their shoulders, because they would rather sacrifice their own wellbeing than that of our communities. And while we honor them, we do not accept that this is necessary. We do not accept that anyone should be broken and burnt out by the precious work that they do.

We bow to no authority that is not substantiated by principles, we defer to no status titles, nor acts of dominance. We gave our voices and our confidence to those tasked with safeguarding and nurturing TGEU and its communities, and we will never again be silent when witnessing abuse of TGEU Staff and our communities.

-Trans Network Balkan