This statement can be attributed to Bill Hardy, President & CEO of Equitas Health
This past Saturday, 28-year-old Chayvis ‘Chay’ Darice Reed, a trans woman of color, was killed simply for living as her true self. Chay’s murder brings the total documented deaths of trans women in the U.S. to nine this year. The continued violence against trans women of color is unacceptable. Today, Equitas Health is speaking out to condemn these murders and to affirm our commitment to the health and safety of all trans and gender non-conforming people.
As a community-based healthcare organization, we believe that a just society provides equality and equity to all people. Yet we know that violence, poverty, homelessness, and stigma disproportionally affect trans people of color.
The AIDS epidemic taught us that silence equals death. When we saw our friends and family dying in the shadows, we didn’t keep quiet; we spoke out, we came together, and we mobilized for equality and change. Today is no different, we need to speak out and to bring attention to this issue.
We remain committed to working with our partners across Ohio to protect trans lives and those trans activists who risk their lives giving voice to the voiceless. Our medical centers, pharmacies and our 15 offices across Ohio remain safe-havens for any transgender or gender non-conforming person.
Today, we take a stand to say that violence against trans individuals, including trans women of color, is unacceptable. We commit to raising trans voices and to fight the systemic oppression of trans individuals. We will continue to speak up and act out until trans women of color are no longer threatened or killed. We ask our supporters take action to protect and affirm trans and gender non-conforming women of color in your community today, tomorrow, and always.