Our sister, friend, colleague, confidante, champion, Brandy Rodriguez has transitioned. And even as we come together at the Family Planning Association to celebrate her life and the impact that she has had on us all, we cannot deny that we miss her and the essence she has brought to our place of work. To the rest of the country and the world, Brandy is known as a human rights advocate, particularly in her work to advance the rights of the LGBTQI community.
Over the years, in her advocacy, she has worn many hats. Many knew her as president of the Trinidad and Tobago Transgender Coalition, and in this capacity, she was even recognized by Queen Elizabeth II earlier this year as the Commonwealth Point of Light. In her official capacity at the Family Planning Association, Brandy was a peer navigator, but to us within the organization, she was simply family.
She was like a big sister whose passion and heart and fierce and unwavering fight for the rights of LGBTQI in Trinidad and Tobago did not just inspire us, but it gave us focus. In this manner, she led us into battle. Brandy fought fearlessly against discrimination. And in this fight, she didn’t just ask for recognition or plead for equal access to quality healthcare, but she made the point that it was a right that must come without conditions.
She was determined to settle for nothing less. Brandy wasn’t just a bright light, she blazed. She transformed. She gave us all focus and purpose. She made the world sit up and take notice. And now, she has transcended. Today, we are coming to terms with the fact that Brandy will no longer be with us physically, but we understand and embrace her light and energy which remains, a light and energy that will continue to give us focus and to go with us into battle as we continue her fierce fight on behalf of the LGBTQI community in partnership with other members of civic society.