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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, November 21 - Volume 42 Issue 47
Transgender Day of Remembrance: At least 226 Trans people murdered this year
Section One
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Transgender Day of Remembrance: At least 226 Trans people murdered this year

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

A new report released in advance of the Transgender Day of Remembrance, November 20, indicates that violence against Trans people continues worldwide.

According to Transgender Europe's Trans Murder Monitoring project, at least 226 Trans people have been murdered within the past 12 months.

Transgender Europe was founded in 2005 in Vienna during the first European Transgender Council. Since 2009 the group has been publishing its Trans Murder Monitoring study, documenting violent Transphobia.

Once again, Brazil and Mexico proved to be the most dangerous countries in the world for Trans people. In Brazil at least 113 were murdered in the past 12 months, and in Mexico 31 were killed.

But Trans people are not totally safe even in well-policed countries, the report shows. Ten Trans people were murdered in the United States, two were killed in Canada, and one was killed in the United Kingdom.

Eleven of those murdered were 18 years old or younger. The youngest was only eight years old. A Brazilian child identified only as Alex told her father she was a girl, and he responded by beating her so severely she later died.

Other stories documented by the report are equally horrible.

A 21-year-old Mexican woman known as Glenda, was beaten and stoned to death. Her half naked body was found weeks after her death in an isolated dumping ground.

Suman Singh, a 20-year-old Indian, was set on fire by four people in January, later dying from the injuries in a hospital.

A Brazilian Trans woman, known only as NN, was reported dead in August. Local newspapers reported she was found 'without eyes.'

Among the U.S. casualties was C. Lipscomb of Detroit, 53 years old at the time of her death.

'The victim was a person of color,' the report notes. 'The undignified way her burned body was dumped in a trash bin indicates transgender hostility.'

Another was Yasmine Shansez, 31, of Fort Myers. She was also identified as a person of color and 'was found burned behind a garbage bin.'

While the murders documented in Transgender Europe's report are chilling, they may represent only a small portion of the actual death toll. The group's research only includes murders that can be documented through publicly available information, or are reported by local advocacy groups.

'That means the number of deaths is certainly underestimated,' the report says. 'Media organizations - including normally reputable Western names - are often guilty of misgendering the victims when they are Trans, making it even more difficult to get a real sense of the problem.'

'Transgender Day of Remembrance is there to honor the people that have lost their lives to brutal transphobia,' Transgender Europe co-chair Alecs Recher told Gay Star News, summing up his group's report.

'Our Trans Murder Monitoring data show that more murders are reported where there is a strong trans movement . This means that we learn only about the tip of the iceberg and that organizing ourselves does make a difference.

'The police, the judicial system, the media and the wider public must never misgender, misname or misreport a trans person's death. At least in death the victim's dignity must not be violated again.

'It is so important for us all to come together on Transgender Day of Remembrance to commemorate the victims and see it as a task to work together to prevent further murders and to improve trans peoples' general living conditions.'

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