National Gay and Lesbian Task Force commemorates the Transgender Day of Remembrance
Tomorrow marks the 12th annual Transgender Day of Remembrance, memorializing those lost to anti-transgender violence over the past year. The Task Force honors the memory of transgender people killed nationally and internationally in 2010. For more information, including a list of related events, visit www.transgenderdor.org.
The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force and the National Center for Transgender Equality conducted the largest survey of transgender discrimination. Among its findings were one quarter of transgender people lost a job for being transgender and high rates of housing instability and homelessness. The survey also revealed double the rates of poverty for transgender people compared to the general population. The data indicate that transgender people have higher vulnerability to violence. It also found that more than half of transgender and gender non-conforming people who were bullied, harassed or assaulted in school because of their gender identity have attempted suicide.
The Task Force worked to change the federal hate crimes law to include anti-transgender crimes. In October 2009, violent hate crimes committed on the basis of gender identity along with sexual orientation became federal crimes under the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, passed by Congress and signed by President Obama.
Statement by Rea Carey, Executive Director National Gay and Lesbian Task Force:
The Task Force family joins in the solemn remembrance of those lost to anti-transgender violence. Our forthcoming report on transgender discrimination spotlights just how pervasive discrimination and bias continue to be for transgender and gender non-conforming people. The personal stories and the shocking and disheartening numbers speak to the urgency of working to end the violence against our community. How many must perish before our society says enough is enough? This must end now, and we must continue working toward a culture that affirms the dignity and worth of all people. Until no more of our transgender friends and family are lost to senseless hate violence, we must not rest.
Some findings from the national transgender discrimination survey can be downloaded here:
• Report reveals discrimination against transgender people by health providers, high HIV rates, lack of access to necessary care. Download here.
• Preliminary findings on employment and economic insecurity. Download here.
• High rates of bullying, suicide attempts among transgender and gender non-conforming people. Download here.