The mission of Gays and Lesbians Opposing Violence (GLOV) is to work to reduce violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) individuals, and those perceived as LGBT, in the District of Columbia through community outreach, education, and monitoring of cases to ensure the rights and dignity of LGBT victims are respected and protected. GLOV also seeks to assist victims of anti-LGBT violence by advocating on their behalf, encouraging reporting, and providing a community of support. Click here for more information.
GLOV Statement on Recent Murders of Transgender Women of Color
Penny Proud, New Orleans, LA
Lamia Beard, Norfolk, VA
Ty Underwood, Tyler, TX
Taja Gabrielle DeJesus, San Francisco, CA
Yazmin Payne, Los Angeles
These are the names of five transgender women of color who have been killed in the last few weeks. Their deaths did not occur in one location, nor do they appear to be connected. In some cases, the victim was misgendered by police and media speculated about activities leading up to their deaths, blaming the victim in the process. Transphobia has reached epidemic proportions and national media outlets largely ignore it.
Gays and Lesbians Opposing Violence (GLOV) strongly condemns the disrespectful handling of these murders by their local police and media outlets, and calls for changes to laws that instruct police departments to use names inconsistent with a person’s gender identity.
The last murder of a transgender individual in the District of Columbia was that of Deoni Jones, who died February 2, 2012. Although we recently passed the third anniversary of her murder, this latest wave of violence reminds us that trans lives everywhere are in danger. And although Deoni’s death sparked positive changes to D.C. law (the JaParker Deoni Jones Birth Certificate Equality Amendment Act of 2013), it should not take senseless acts of violence to inspire change that ensures transgender individuals, and particularly transgender women of color, are able to live safely in the District of Columbia.
GLOV implores D.C.’s gay, lesbian, and bisexual community, and its allies, to join forces to help ensure the rights and dignity of its trans community are respected and protected. The safety of the transgender community is not a trans issue, nor an LGBT issue. It’s a human rights issue that deserves the full weight our community can muster. Get involved; be vocal. Offer your time, money, resources and connections to organizations such as Casa Ruby, The DC Trans Coalition, and the Transgender Women of Color Collective, each devoted to empowering the lives of trans people.
February 20, 2015