My community is hurting.
So far in 2021, at least 48 transgender, non-binary, and gender non-conforming people have been killed—37 with a gun. It is the deadliest year on record for transgender people in the United States and Puerto Rico.
For trans people in the United States and Puerto Rico, violence against us has been on a relentless rise. Just last year, our country broke the previous record for the deadliest year for anti-trans homicides. It took only 11 months for bigots to murder members of my community in even greater numbers.
And yet, this violence is not experienced equally within the trans community. Black trans women have often faced the worst, targeted for both their skin color and gender identity. They make up the vast majority of the victims of anti-trans homicides—and most of them are killed with a gun.
So let us be clear: Violence against transgender, non-binary, and gender non-conforming people is a gun violence issue. As a movement, we must not only fight for, but also center the marginalized communities that disproportionately experience gun violence. We must support the trans people of our country by pushing for gun safety policies that will work to keep them safe.
We have a role to play in the fight against hate. But if we are to be effective, we must recognize that these murders do not exist in a vacuum. They are enabled and normalized by anti-trans rhetoric and policy—both of which have dramatically increased on all levels of government, from town councils to Congress.
People like me have been a part of our movement for years. We have shown up alongside you to fight for gun safety with the same passion and fervor.
Now more than ever, I need you to make sure that when you’re showing up to end gun violence, you’re showing up for us too.
Thank you for being a part of this movement, both today and every day.
National Advisory Board Member
Students Demand Action