There has been a recent wave of violence directed toward transgender people of color in the District of Columbia. Within the last few weeks, two trans-women were found murdered, and earlier in the month, a 20-year police veteran fired his weapon into the car of three transgender women, striking two of the women. The violence in DC is gathering some media attention, but it is a story that is far too common within the trans community, and especially among transgender people of color. That history is documented in two recent studies that tell the story of the disturbing trend of violence and discrimination targeted at transgender people of color.
The first report, from the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs, found that not only were trans people and people of color more likely to experience violent hate crimes, those hate crimes were more likely to result in their death. 70% of reported LGBT related murders were of LGBT people of color, while people of color accounted for only 44% of all victims. Likewise, transgender women made up 44% of murders while representing only 11% of all victims of violent hate crimes (and a hugely smaller percentage of the LGBT community as a whole). Trans people and people of color were also much more likely than cisgender white victims to not receive adequate medical attention. And trans women of color are three times more likely to experience violence from police officers.
The second report comes from the National Center for Transgender Equality. An analysis of their National Transgender Discrimination Survey revealed striking facts about respondents who identified as Black. Black transgender people had an unemployment rate of 26%, twice that of transgender people as a whole, and four times the general population. 34% reported income under $10,000/year, more the double the poverty rate of all trans people, and over eight times that of the general population.
These studies confirm what many in the community already know: that those with intersecting identities such as being a trans-woman and a person of color experience one oppression compounded by another.
You can learn more about how racism and transphobia intersect by attending our upcoming summit, register today.
Category: News: Transgender Justice