Metro Weekly

Houston city hall lit in trans flag colors to honor slain transgender woman

Tracy Single is the 15th transgender woman of color known to have been killed so far this year

Tracy Single and Houston City Hall — Photos: @HarrisonGuy / Twitter

Houston city hall was lit in the colors of the transgender pride flag last week in honor of Tracy Single, the 16th trans person to be murdered in the U.S. so far this year.

Single was killed at a gas station in Houston, Texas, on July 30th, but it took police two weeks to identify her.

According to TransGriot, a woman was reported to have died of unnatural causes, but a week later the Houston Police Department’s LGBT liaisons updated the community to alert that the woman was trans and had been murdered.

On Aug. 11, a town hall meeting was held to try and identify the victim, which ultimately led to Single being identified.

Along with city hall, six bridges in Houston were also lit in honor of Single, with the bridges cutting through part of the city’s “gayborhood.”

Single is the 16th transgender person, the 15th trans woman of color, and the third trans person in Texas to be killed in 2019.

In a tweet, HRC mourned Single’s death.

“HRC mourns Tracy Single, a Black transgender woman killed in Houston,” the organization wrote. “We must #SayHerName and work to address the intersecting factors that influence and precipitate the violence that plagues so many within the transgender community.”

Transgender women of color face disproportionate levels of violence and murder, with HRC branding the killings an “epidemic.”

“These victims are not numbers — they were people with hopes and dreams, love and laughter,” HRC said in a blog post.

“There are currently very few explicit legal protections for transgender or gender-expansive people. Despite marginal gains in state and local policies that support and affirm transgender people, recent years have been marked by anti-LGBTQ attacks at all levels of government.

“We must demand better from our elected officials and reject harmful anti-transgender legislation appearing at the local, state and federal levels because it is clear that fatal violence disproportionately affects transgender women of color. The intersections of racism, transphobia, sexism, biphobia and homophobia conspire to deprive them of necessities to live and thrive.”

At least two transgender women of color have been murdered in the D.C. area so far this year. Zoe Spears and Ashanti Carmon were both killed in Fairmount Heights, Md., just across the border from the District of Columbia.

Jordan Cofer became the first known transgender man to be murdered this year, after he was shot to death by his brother during a recent mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio.

Read more:

Trump administration tells Supreme Court to make discriminating against trans people legal

Forum: Decriminalizing and destigmatizing sex work will make the District safer for transgender women

North Charleston man turns himself in for shooting transgender woman Denali Berries Stuckey

Rhuaridh Marr is Metro Weekly's managing editor. He can be reached at rmarr@metroweekly.com.

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