SLC Mayor Mendenhall on Transgender Day of Remembrance: ‘our city is here for you’

Friday is Transgender Day of Remembrance, a day dedicated to the memory of those who were murdered due to transphobia.

In Salt Salt Lake City, 320 flags were posted in front of Salt Lake City and the county building, each with the name and biography of a transgender person who lost his life in the past year.

The exhibit is part of several events across the city, including a Transgender Day of Remembrance program in the Capitol Rotunda and a memorial service and candlelight vigil scheduled for Saturday night between the flags of Salt Lake City and County Building.

“Transgender Day of Remembrance is a time for us to reflect on the beautiful lives we lost to transphobia and reaffirm our commitment to combating hate and protecting trans lives,” tweeted the Salt Lake Mayor City, Erin Mendenhall. “To our SLC transgender community, I see you, I love you and our city is there for you.”

President Joe Biden also issued a statement Friday calling on the Senate to pass the Equal Opportunities Act so that “all people can live free from fear and discrimination.”

“This year at least 46 transgender people in this country – and hundreds more around the world – have been killed in horrific acts of violence,” the statement said. “Each of these lives was precious. Each of them deserved freedom, justice and joy. Today, on Transgender Day of Remembrance, we mourn those we lost in the deadliest year of all time for transgender Americans, as well as countless other transgender people – People – disproportionately black and brown transgender women and girls – who are exposed to brutal violence, discrimination and harassment.

He said that transgender people still live in fear and face systemic barriers to freedom and equality, and he highlighted the “worrying proliferation of discriminatory state laws” that have been passed across the country targeting transgender people.

Utah lawmakers are currently considering bill that would regulate the participation of transgender athletes in high school sports, even though the Utah High School Activities Association has no record of transgender children playing on any teams.

According to a study by the Williams Institute at UCLA School of Law, transgender people are more than four times more likely than cis people to experience violent victimization.

“Transgender people are some of the bravest Americans I know,” Biden said. “But no one should be brave just to live in safety and dignity. Today we remember. Tomorrow – and every day – we must continue to act.”

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