Post submitted by former HRC Digital Media Manager Helen Parshall
Update: A month later, Single's boyfriend was arrested and charged with her murder.
According to multiple reports, Tracy Single, a Black transgender woman, was killed in Houston -- the 15th trans woman of color and 16th transgender person that we know of to die by violent means this year.
Though Single, 22, was found dead at a gas station on July 30, it took nearly two weeks for law enforcement, with the help of local LGBTQ activists, to identify her.
Police are looking for witnesses, and anyone with information is encouraged to call the Houston Police Department Homicide Division at 713-308-3600 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-8477.
“Rest in power and peace Tracy,” wrote Monica Roberts, a Houston-based transgender advocate. “You were taken away from us way too soon.”
On Wednesday and Thursday nights, Houston city officials honored Single by lighting the City Hall building and bridges over U.S. Route 59 in the colors of the transgender flag.
In November of 2018, ahead of Transgender Day of Remembrance, HRC Foundation released “A National Epidemic: Fatal Anti-Transgender Violence in America in 2018,” a heartbreaking report honoring the trans people killed and detailing the contributing and motivating factors that lead to this tragic violence.
These victims are not numbers - they were people with hopes and dreams, love and laughter.
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.
HRC will continue to hold the Trump administration and all elected officials who fuel the flames of hate accountable at the ballot box.
This epidemic of violence that disproportionately targets transgender people of color -- particularly Black transgender women -- must cease.
For more information about HRC’s transgender justice work, visit hrc.org/Transgender. For more information about how to support Texas’ trans community, check out the Transgender Education Network of Texas.