The below post is written by Moe Macarow, GLAAD’s Media Programs Fellow.
Today marks the 10th Annual Transgender Day of Remembrance, an international observance honoring the lives lost due to anti-transgender violence in the U.S. and around the world.
If this were one week ago, I would have blogged about fifteen transgender and gender non-conforming people who were murdered in America this year. Not only is fifteen a high number, it is most likely underestimated. A large number of transgender deaths go unreported or misreported, and accurate statistics are impossible to calculate since they are not collected, mostly due to lack of federal hate crimes protections for transgender Americans.
If this were one week ago, the list of 15 names we would pause to remember would have included the names of Brian McGlothin, Patricia Murphy, Stacy Brown, Adolphus Simmons, Ashley Sweeney, Sanesha Stewart, Lawrence King, Simmie Williams, Lloyd Nixon, Ebony Whitaker, Angie Zapata, Jaylynn L. Namauu, Ruby Molina and Aimee Wilcoxson.
However, last Friday we sadly added one more name to the list of lives lost this year due to anti-transgender hatred and prejudice.
The sixteenth death was Lateisha Green. Only 22, Green was shot to death outside a friend’s house on the night of November 14 in Syracuse, New York. Her friend Alyssa Davis had called her to invite her over to a party, where she was murdered while standing in front of the house for nothing more than being transgender. And just days before the 2008 observance of Transgender Day of Remembrance.
The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) estimates that 1 in 12 transgender Americans face the chance of being murdered, and the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs (NCAVP)’s recent report showed that the largest increase in violence against any demographic targeted transgender men.
These statistics are unacceptable.
This year for Transgender Day of Remembrance, we should not only honor the victims of senseless, hate-motivated violence - we must work each day forward to make sure that these sixteen lives are the last victims to be mourned.
Today, we must pledge to speak out against hate and for transgender equality. We must strive as a community to put an end to anti-transgender violence. Even one more murder is too many.
And if you have experienced discrimination because of your gender identity or expression, reach out to the community and call the:
- Sylvia Rivera Law Project at (212) 337-8550
- Transgender Law Center at (415) 865-0176
- Anti-Violence Projectat (212) 714-1141 (24-hour bilingual hotline)
- Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund at (646) 862-9396