WASHINGTON -- November 19 -- November 20 marks Transgender Day of Remembrance, a day on which people gather and remember transgender people who are killed due to anti-transgender hate or prejudice in cities throughout the world. "We are deeply saddened that our transgender brothers and sisters are still dying in the streets," said Task Force Executive Director Matt Foreman. "Transgender people are victims of pervasive and inescapable discrimination and violence. Those who experience racial and economic status discrimination are especially vulnerable. Transgender people are the segment of the lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender community most affected by everyday discrimination and violence. We hope that all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and our friends and allies will attend a Day of Remembrance event. Let us today, across the nation, contemplate the situation in which transgender people live and rededicate ourselves to full equality for all members of our community."
This year, Transgender Day of Remembrance events are happening in over 150 cities in remembrance of the 21 transgender people known to killed in the last year, according to Gender Advocacy and Education, the organization that produces Day of Remembrance.
"In the last year, we are only aware of only one anti-transgender hate crime that was prosecuted as a hate crime and went to trial," said Task Force Deputy Executive Director Rea Carey, referring to the 2002 brutal murder of Gwen Araujo. "When you read over the list of 21 people who were killed this year, please note how few of them have even resulted in an arrest. The sad truth is that these murders are simply not being investigated or prosecuted."
Three of Gwen Araujo's killers went on trial in California earlier this year. The trial was declared a mistrial after the jury found itself irrevocably deadlocked. The case will be tried again in May of 2005.
A list of the locations and times of the Day of Remembrance events can be found at: http://www.gender.org/remember/day/where.html. Transgender Day of Remembrance is a project of Gender Education and Advocacy.
The National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is home to the Transgender Civil Rights Project which provides technical assistance, including evaluation of legislative and policy language, to organizations, advocates, legislators, and others who are working to establish policies and laws to create equality for transgender people.
Note: The Task Force reminds editors and reporters that transgender people are to be referred in the pronoun appropriate to the gender a person lives his or her life as. More information on how to appropriately refer to transgender people can be found in Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation's "Suggestions for Fair, Accurate & Inclusive Coverage" available at http://www.glaad.org/media/resource_kit_detail.php?id=3061 or from the National Center for Transgender Equality, "Basic Tips for Journalists" at http://www.nctequality.org/media.asp.
Founded in 1973, the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force was the first national lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) civil rights and advocacy organization and remains the movement's leading voice for freedom, justice, and equality. We work to build the grassroots political strength of our community by training state and local activists and leaders and organizing broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation. Our Policy Institute, the community's premiere think tank, provides research and policy analysis to support the struggle for complete equality. As part of a broader social justice movement, we work to create a world that respects and makes visible the diversity of human expression and identity where all people may fully participate in society. Headquartered in Washington, DC, we also have offices in New York City, Los Angeles, and Cambridge.