Unity Coalition|Coalicion Unida's SILENT PROCESSIONAL | HONORING MURDERED TRANSGENDER INDIVIDUALS, AND THOSE LOST DUE TO LACK OF COMMUNITY SUPPORT & RESOURCES.
CIARA McELVEEN was the 8th transgender person killed in the U.S. in 2017. 7 identified as female, 1 male. 5 were black, one Anglo, 1 Native American. Dozens more have been murdered across Latin America, Europe, the Middle East & beyond. WHERE IS OUR OUTRAGE, PEOPLE?
We cannot preach about issues affecting the LGBT community, without truly caring and fighting for ALL, especially those who led the way for us and our Freedoms – the Transgender Community. UNITY COALITION|COALICION UNIDA, a Florida non profit committed to year round programming, training, resources, support & vigilance for the Latino|Hispanic| LGB & Transgender community, is doing something.
On Sunday April 9th, 2017 at Miami Beach Gay Pride Parade, Unity Coalition|Coalición Unida lead a SILENT PROCESSIONAL- with a FLOAT and accompanying supporters walking along - HONORING MURDERED TRANSGENDER INDIVIDUALS, AND THOSE LOST DUE TO LACK OF COMMUNITY SUPPORT & RESOURCES.
"Unity Coalition|Coalicion Unida's silent processional for the transgender community at Miami Beach Pride was a poignant and powerful moment for me." -Trans Miami founder & activist ARYAH LESTER
"As in the spirit of the original pride marches of yesteryear, we shone light on the plight of those most vulnerable & disenfranchised, amidst a sea of rainbows and go-go boys. The gathering of members of the local transgender leaders in solidarity, and the allyship evident with the crowds joining in shouting #TransLivesMatters touched my soul. I hope this historic showing at #MiamiBeachGayPride garners even more empathy from the masses in mourning those violently taken to lessen the murders in our country."
On June 28, 1969, New York City’s STONEWALL INN bar patrons clashed with police officers, in a raid that would have otherwise resulted in arrests and public shaming. However, this time the patrons fought back, setting off what we now know as the modern LGBT movement, including the tradition of LGBT Pride marches. Two often-forgotten people who made an impact that night were transgender women of color: Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera. THEY led the way to our rights. THEY started the movement we all now lead and in great part – have benefitted from. We cannot leave anyone behind in our quest for EQUALITY.
NOW IS OUR TIME to fight for the Transgender Community with the same passion, vigilance and energy we have used for Gay & Lesbian issues. Where will history place YOU on Transgender Rights & Equality?
UC|CU, in partnership with TransMiami, provide year round programming, support and services for the Transgender community.
PROCESIÓN EN SILENCIO | Honrando personas transgénero que han sido asesinadas- y las perdidas debido a falta De Apoyo y Recursos Comunitarios.
MONICA LOERA, a 43-year-old Latina transgender woman from North Austin, Texas, was shot to death in front of her North Austin home on Jan. 22, 2016 by a man she was seen arguing with outside. One of her friends told the Chronicle, “She was funny [and] beautiful… She loved Madonna and she loved to cook
JASMINE SIERRA, 53, a Latina transgender woman, died under suspicious circumstances in late January but, as KERO reported, many friends were unaware of her passing until March because police and local media in Bakersfield, California, misgendered her after her body was found. Neighbors reported hearing gunshots on the night of her death.
Arizona cops shot KAYDEN CLARK on February 4th in Arizona. A 24-year-old transgender man with Asperger’s, after he allegedly lunged at them with a knife during a suicide call. In his last YouTube video, he said that doctors were denying him hormones because of his Asperger’s: “I don’t know what to do. I’m stuck.” He also claimed to have tried “suicide by cop” before.
Two men from Southeast D.C. were charged with murder and robbery after KEYONNA BLAKENEY, a black transgender woman, was found stabbed to death in a Maryland motel room. Blakeney celebrated her 22nd birthday just days before her April death.
MERCEDES SUCCESSFUL began transitioning weeks before being shot. On May 15, 2016, the 32-year-old black transgender woman and performer was found dead in a Haines City, Florida, parking lot. One of her last Facebook posts was a Mother’s Day note: “You’ve been not only a mom for my siblings and I but for all my friends. I love you.”
A year and a half into his transition, transgender man AMOS BEEDE, 38, was brutally beaten by five people after an apparent dispute between two Vermont homeless encampments, dying six days later from a brain injury. Beede’s sister Ida McKinney told WPTZ, “We wanted him to wake up and he couldn’t. He couldn’t wake up.”
On June 5, GODDESS DIAMOND, a 20-year-old black transgender woman, died of “blunt force trauma” and was left in a burning car in New Orleans, as The Advocate reported. A man was spotted on surveillance footage leaving and returning to the car with a container of gasoline. Diamond worked at Walmart and was remembered as “very loved” and “very kind.”
DEE WHIGHAM, a 25-year-old black transgender woman and RN, was in Mississippi in late July to see a rodeo when she was found stabbed to death in her hotel, the Sun Herald reported. Navy Seaman Dwayna Hickerson was charged. After Hickerson’s arrest, Whigham’ s sister wrote, “It feels crazy looking at the person that has selfishly changed your life forever.” Autopsy results released in September and reported by WCMH showed that Whigham was stabbed 119 times "with most to her face" and that her throat had been slashed three times.
As Cleveland.com reported, 26-year-old SKYE MOCKABEE was found dead with signs of head trauma in a warehouse parking lot on July 30, 2016, making her the fourth transgender woman killed in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, in the last four years. According to her Facebook profile, she worked at a Chipotle.
Police found the body of ERYKAH TIJERINA, a 36-year-old transgender Latina woman, inside an El Paso apartment with “obvious signs of foul play,” KFOX-14 reported. Her sisters told the TV station that Tijerina was “funny, giving and unapologetic about the person she was.” Another friend told KTSM: “She just wanted to be treated like anybody else.”
RAE’LYNN THOMAS, a 28-year-old black transgender woman, was allegedly shot and beaten by her mother’s ex-boyfriend, James Allen Byrd, as WBNS reported. Rae’Lynn’s mother Renee told WBNS that Byrd had long disapproved of her daughter’s transition and even called her “the devil” before shooting her. Rae’Lynn’s final words: “Mom, please don’t leave me. Mom, I’m dying.”
On the evening of September 11th, 28-year-old T.T. SAFFORE was found dead “lying near railroad tracks” with her “throat slit,” the Chicago Tribune reported. Although major Chicago newspapers misgendered. Saffore, the city’s LGBT newspaper Windy City Times spoke with her friends and family who said that the slain transgender woman was a “happy cheerful person,” and a “great gymnast.” Jaliyah Armstrong, who organized a vigil, told the Windy City Times that another woman had threatened Saffore with a knife just days before the homicide, adding, “People don’t know what we go through out here. They don’t see the struggle being transgender on the West Side.”
At around 3 AM on September 16th, Baltimore police found CRYSTAL EDMONDS, a black transgender woman, suffering from a gunshot wound to the head, the Associated Press reported. She died later that morning in a hospital. Key’Ayshia Tucker, a local transgender advocate, told WMAR that violence against transgender women in Baltimore is all too common, noting that “[they] are looked at, not as people, but as an object that has no value.”