16th Annual Transgender Day of Remembrance

Today, WORLD joins the nation in commemorating the 16th annual Transgender Day of Remembrance. We can begin by saying the names of those whose deaths have been recorded this year in the United States:

Papi Edwards

Lamia Beard

Ty Underwood

Yazmin Vash Payne

Taja Gabrielle De Jesus

Penny Proud

Kristina Gomez

Reinwald, Keyshia Blige

London Chanel

Mercedes Williamson

India Clarke

K.C. Haggard

Amber Monroe

Shade Shuler

Elisha Walker

Tamara Dominguez

Kiesha Jenkins

Jasmine Collins

Kandis Capri

Ashton O’Hara

Bri Golec

It’s been a year of increased transgender visibility but the reported murders of trans people will be the largest ever. At least 81 transgender people were murdered worldwide this year — and those are just the victims whose deaths were reported. Most, though not all, were women of color. These were women living at the intersections of transphobia, racism, homophobia, sexism, and criminalization. Transgender people are among the groups most affected by the HIV epidemic. In the US, 21.6% of transgender women are living with HIV. Despite accounting for a small proportion of the population, self-identified transgender women have a much higher rate of HIV diagnoses (6.3%) than other risk categories, including men who have sex with men (MSM; 4.2%) or partners of people living with HIV.

On Transgender Day of Remembrance we memorialize those who lost their lives for being themselves and pause to honor those we’ve lost to hate and violence and acknowledge the continued work that needs to be done to protect our fellow sisters and brothers.

Around the world, communities have planned vigils to come together and remember those who have died in the past year. For more information about Transgender Day of Remembrance or to find an event near you, please visit the official website http://tdor.info/2015/10/06/tdor-events-and-locations-2015/.