Southern California trans and queer youth take action for safety and justice in wake of pervasive violence against LGBTQ community members of color
Demonstration at LA City Hall: Trans and Queer Youth Take Action #TQYouthPower
[Los Angeles, CA]- In a youth-led demand for change, trans and queer youth leaders of color from the Gay-Straight Alliance Network of California and Youth Justice Coalition will gather in front of the Los Angeles City Hall steps at 5pm today to elevate the voices of their communities and their urgent need for justice, safety, and action in the face of pervasive violence targeting transgender women and youth of color. This demonstration is one of several happening across the country today for Gay-Straight Alliance Day for Racial Justice, which this year is honoring the #BlackLivesMatter movement and particularly calling attention to the violence targeting Black transgender women.
“We queer and trans youth of color will reclaim the streets that have been overwhelmed with acts of brutality targeted towards our LGBTQ siblings,” said Maesha Jenkins from Gardena High School and a youth organizer with the Gay- Straight Alliance Network of California.
Already this new year, transgender and queer youth of color are mourning the loss of eight transgender women (mostly trans women of color), and queer Latina teenager Jessie Hernandez, who was only 17 years old when murdered by Denver Police. In the face of Black History Month and all the ongoing pervasive violence targeting transgender women and queer youth of color, trans and queer youth of color from across Southern California are letting adults know that they are here to express, resist, and organize.
“We will not sit through another loss in silence,” said Kassandra, a student at Jordan High School and a youth organizer with the Gay- Straight Alliance Network of California. “This country, which celebrates Black History Month while ignoring the murders of Black transgender women, needs a wake up call. We are the trans and queer youth movement you think doesn’t exist. Let us carve a path towards something better, let us be the ones to create another world, a place where we can all be united in peace as one.”
#TQYouthPower #BlackFutureLegends #BlackTransLivesMatter
Gay-Straight Alliance Network (GSA Network) is a national next-generation LGBTQ racial and gender justice organization that empowers and trains queer, trans and allied youth leaders to advocate, organize, and mobilize an intersectional movement for safer schools and healthier communities. GSA Network operates the GSA Network of California. http://gsanetwork.org
National GSA Day for Racial Justice is an annual day of action to mobilize for racial justice and celebrate the multiple identities we hold as LGBTQ youth. This year, GSA Day for Racial Justice will honor Audre Lorde’s words, impact, and legacy, and take action across the country in support of the #BlackLivesMatter movement.
The Youth Justice Coalition (YJC) is working to build a youth, family and prisoner-led movement to challenge race, gender and class inequality in Los Angeles County’s and California’s juvenile injustice systems. Our goal is to dismantle policies and institutions that have ensured the massive lock-up of people of color; widespread police violence, corruption and distrust between police and communities; disregard of youth and communities’ Constitutional and human rights; the construction of a vicious school-to-jail track; and the build-up of the world’s largest network of juvenile halls, jails and prisons. The YJC uses direct action organizing, advocacy, political education, transformative justice and activist arts to mobilize system-involved youth, families and our allies – both in the community and within lock-ups – to bring about change. - See more at: http://www.youth4justice.org/about-the-yjc/history#sthash.zxH8EEKb.dpuf