In recognition of Transgender Day of Remembrance, the Philadelphia Department of Public Health issued a statement expressing its solemnity towards the lives lost of at least 26 transgender and gender non-conforming individuals in the city in 2023. According to Dr. Kathleen Brady, Director of the Division of HIV Health, “We stand together in grief and anger as we reflect on the stark reality that 88% of these victims were people of color, with 54% identified as Black transgender women. This alarming trend underscores the urgent need for greater awareness, understanding, and action to address the ongoing threats faced by the trans community.”
The statement also highlighted that 73% of the victims lost their lives to gun violence, emphasizing the pressing need for comprehensive measures to curb firearm proliferation. Equally concerning is that 47% of victims with a known assailant were killed by a romantic/sexual partner, friend or family member. This underscores the critical importance of fostering safe and supportive environments within interpersonal relationships.
Additionally, it was revealed that 50% of the victims were misgendered or deadnamed by authorities or media outlets, compounding the pain experienced by trans individuals and their loved ones. It is essential that we work collectively to rectify this injustice and ensure that every individual deserves dignity and respect regardless of their gender identity.
The statement concluded by renewing our commitment to advocating for trans rights, safety and wellbeing while striving for a world where everyone can live without discrimination, violence or prejudice. The Philadelphia Department remains committed to fostering a community that embraces diversity, inclusivity and compassion; therefore we urge all citizens to join us in this crucial endeavor towards equality and justice for all members of our community regardless their gender identity.