Prominent Catholic Leaders Join The Human Rights Campaign to Condemn Transgender Discrimination

by Aryn Fields

Today, the Human Rights Campaign Foundation is joined by Archbishop John Wester, Bishop John Stowe, The Association of U.S. Catholic Priests and other Catholic leaders, in releasing a letter disavowing discrimination and violence against the transgender community. The letter goes on to affirm that Catholic teachings command that all people are to be treated with dignity and respect.

The life-threatening violence against the transgender community, spurred by discrimination and hate, is a moral issue and one in which the voices of Catholic leaders are critical to the safety of our transgender siblings. This is a critical moment to come together united, propelled by our faith, and lift our voices to unequivocally say that transgender rights are human rights, and they must be protected."

Alphonso David, Human Rights Campaign President

The letter notes the urgency to end the epidemic of violence against the transgender community, particularly affecting transgender women of color. It goes on to say that as Catholic leaders, it is their duty to uphold every person’s humanity, and never tolerate unjust discrimination.

In 2020, the Human Rights Campaign tracked at least 44 deaths of transgender and gender non-conforming people, of which the majority of victims were Black or Brown. HRC recorded more violent deaths of transgender and gender non-conforming people last year than in any year since our tracking began in 2013. Since HRC began tracking this violence, more than 200 deaths have been recorded. Of these victims, 78% have been transgender women of color and 85% have been transgender and gender non-conforming people of color.

Since the start of 2021, HRC has tracked 12 known deaths of transgender or non-binary people—making the start of this year unprecedently violent. In the face of this escalation of violence, it is more critical for people of all faiths to join and declare that discrimination against the transgender community must immediately stop.

The full letter can be found at this link.

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