Today! DC Council Hearing on Hate Crimes

This afternoon at 2pm, the DC Council’s Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing on hate crimes in DC, with a particular focus on crimes against trans people this summer. The hearing is in room 412 in the John A. Wilson Building, located at 1350 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, and the public is welcome to attend.

Several trans activists will be testifying this afternoon, including representatives from DCTC. Following up on our letter sent to the Council last week, we have submitted extensive testimony so that’s there no question as to the scope and severity of violence against trans people in DC.

A few highlights from our statement:

  • Summary of the most violent attacks against trans women this summer — including two murders — only one of which has resulted in an arrest.
  • Critical overview of police response to this violence, noting repeated failures to properly investigate and prevent crime against trans people.
  • A discussion of the roots of violence against trans people, with a particular focus on the violent consequences of DC’s anti-sex work laws.
  • Recommendations to both the Metropolitan Police Department and the U.S. Attorney’s office for DC.
Our ultimate conclusion is that transphobic bias in the police department and other elements of the legal system make it impossible for that system to properly investigate and prosecute bias-motivated crimes against trans people.
You can read our full testimony and supporting materials here. If you can’t attend the hearing in person, you can watch it live on cable channel 13, or stream online here.

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