PHOTOS BY DONNA ACETO | At twilight on November 20, members of the transgender community and their allies, advocates, and elected officials gathered at a City Hall vigil to commemorate the Transgender Day of Remembrance. The annual event has been marked around the world since 1999 to draw attention to the disproportionate level of violent crime targeting the transgender community and to remember those who have died as a result.
Among the most recent examples of such violence in New York is the brutal August 2013 beating death of 21-year-old Islan Nettles in Harlem, for which there has been no prosecution, and the assault this October on Kimy Hartman in Bushwick that has left her recovering from traumatic brain injury and likely in need of additional surgery. No arrests have been made in that case, either.
Chanel Lopez from the New York City Anti-Violence Project (center), flanked (toward the front) by City Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer, the LGBT Community Center’s Glennda Testone, Public Advocate Letitia James, transgender advocate Melissa Sklarz, who is a board member at the Empire State Pride Agenda, Councilmember Corey Johnson, Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito (head turned), and Councilmember Rosie Mendez. | DONNA ACETO
The LGBT Community Center's Tiffany Mathieu, with Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer looking on. | DONNA ACETO
Longtime transgender rights advocate Melissa Sklarz. | DONNA ACETO
Phoenix Nastasha Russell of Make the Road New York. | DONNA ACETO
Councilmember Rosie Mendez, flanked by colleagues Jimmy Van Bramer and Corey Johnson, tells the crowd “Trans lives mattter.” | DONNA ACETO
PHOTO BY DONNA ACETO