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We Are All Safer When the Law Recognizes and Protects Our Transgender Neighbors

The Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Washington Coalition of Sexual Assault Programs, and WomenSpirit – Washington State Native American Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault, together stand in support of transgender recognition, rights, and protections under law. Everyone deserves the basic rights and fundamental freedoms of life, liberty, safety, and respect. We oppose any effort to narrowly define gender under federal law that would roll back those essential protections. Such efforts threaten the safety and lives of some of the most vulnerable children, youth, and families in our state.

Domestic violence and sexual assault advocacy and service programs in Washington State are committed to serving transgender survivors of violence, safely and with dignity. We join in the recent statement from The National Task Force to End Sexual and Domestic Violence:

“We affirm our commitment to transgender inclusive policies as core to our mission to end sexual and domestic violence and reiterate that narratives that peddle anti-trans policies as necessary for protecting women and children are simply false.”

Transgender people experience alarming rates of hate violence, sexual violence, intimate partner violence, police harassment, school bullying, and discrimination in employment, housing, education and access to health care.

Transgender people of color, Native people, and immigrants face the compounded impacts of racism, homophobia, and anti-trans bias. Weakening legal recognition and protections for these communities will make those disparities worse.

Every person has the right to freedom from fear and violence, and discrimination does not make any of us safer. The anti-violence movement in Washington State and in our country has been at the forefront of standing up for trans-inclusive policies and protections to protect survivors and communities. We will not turn back now, and we will not leave anyone behind.


Here are 3 things you can do right now:

1) For anti-violence programs: Ask your board of directors, Tribal council, or other governing body to affirm this statement and share with your supporters and local community.

2) For individuals: Share this statement and post in your social media (this is one of those times when social media makes a difference!).

3) For domestic violence, sexual assault, and crime victim advocates: Learn about best practices for serving transgender survivors of violence and reducing harm.