This evening, several members of our Board of Directors attended the local Transgender Day of Remembrance ceremony on the beach in Biloxi. The remembrance was opened by a prayer by our board member Jon Caridad, and our President, Rhiannon along with Molly Kester read the names of victims and spoke to the gathering.
In addition PFLAG National released a powerful policy statement which we are sharing here:
Anti-Transgender Violence and Discrimination Policy
PFLAG was the first national LGBTQ+ organization to mandate the full inclusion of people who are transgender as part of its expressed mission statement, approved by the Board of Directors in 1998.
PFLAG recognizes that in the 20+ years since approving this inclusive mission, discrimination, violence, and harm against transgender and gender-expansive people has greatly increased, with violence against transgender people—in particular Black transgender women—growing to epidemic proportions. PFLAG also recognizes that transgender people of color experience a compounded negative impact from their intersectional identities, including poverty, homelessness, unemployment, and health disparities.
PFLAG commits to advocating with—and supporting—transgender and gender-expansive people; and to working to reduce and remove the root causes of this crisis of violence and injustice, including systemic racism, sexism, discrimination, and harassment. We are also committed to educating others and ourselves about gender identity and gender expression in order to meet unfounded fear with facts.
PFLAG will work to build communities that value transgender and gender-expansive people, and to reduce societal barriers that lead to harm, poverty and, too often, death. PFLAG will deploy its resources to listen to, engage, and bolster diverse transgender communities and the organizations that serve them, lifting up actions to increase opportunities for fair and just employment, housing, healthcare, and access to public services including law enforcement. PFLAG will also continue to educate law enforcement agencies and officers to reduce harm, and end the high rates of mistreatment, incarceration, denial of necessary medications, and physical and sexual assault in jails and prisons that transgender and gender-expansive people—especially Black transgender women—experience.