New York (CNN)Black transgender activist Raquel Willis stood on the deck of the Brooklyn Museum on Sunday and led thousands of protesters in a chant.
Thousands show up for black trans people in nationwide protestsWeCruitr.io Popular News
“I believe in my power,” she said, as people in the crowd echoed the words back. “I believe in your power. I believe in our power. I believe in black trans power.”
The Black Trans Lives Matter rally in New York, one of many nationwide, came after two black trans women — Dominique “Rem’Mie” Fells, 27, of Philadelphia, and Riah Milton, 25, of Cincinnati, Ohio — were murdered last week.
There have been 14 reported murders of trans and gender non-conforming people — including Fells and Milton — since the start of 2020, according to the Human Rights Campaign. But the number of deaths of trans people are likely undercounted, the Human Rights Campaign said in its report on anti-transgender violence in the US in 2019.
Sunday’s protest also took place amid global demonstrations in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, which has surged in the wake of George Floyd’s death.
It also followed the Trump administration’s announcement that it is eliminating an Obama-era regulation prohibiting discrimination in health care against patients who are transgender.
Led by and centered around black trans women, Sunday’s march and rally in New York gave trans and gender non-conforming people the opportunity to mourn lives lost, and to vocalize their demand for justice and fair treatment.