Trans Lives Matter


"When trans people leave their house, it's an act of revolution."

Ja'Nae Tyler, Director of Operations, Baltimore Safe Haven

Since 1999 when transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith organzied a vigil for Rita Hester, a transgender woman murdered in 1998, November 20 has marked Transgender Day of Remembrance. Rounding out Transgender Awareness Week, this day is a time for transgender and gender non-conforming (TGNC) community members, advocates and allies to come together to honor the lives and say the names of TNGC people lost to anti-trans violence.

At this year's vigil, organized by Baltimore Safe Haven, Bmore Blxck and FreeState Justice, 48 names were read, making 2021 the deadliest year on record for TGNC people in America, predominantly BIPOC trans women.

Say their names

We know that offering a place to get gender-affirming care and safe shelter is crucial to ending anti-trans violence. Von Cash started his medical transition two years ago, and has never been happier. However due to fear, stigma and lack of options, he had to wait 48 years to get there.

Most shelters do not acknowledge or respect the rights of TGNC people and are incredibly unsafe for them. This means they often sleep on the streets and are very likely to be targets of violence (see statistics). 

TGNC youth who still rely on parents/caregivers for support can be at even higher risk of experiencing homelessness because families often reject or abuse them. And there aren’t many places for them to turn. Baltimore Safe Haven, an organization founded and run by Black trans women, is the only program in our city that offers shelter specifically for TGNC people.  

Learn more about:

Baltimore Safe Haven I Bmore Blxck I FreeState Justice I How to support the TGNC community


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