A Statement by Louisiana Trans Advocates and Equality Louisiana on Recent News of the Abominable Treatment of a Transgender Woman in Natchitoches Parish

The leaders and members of Louisiana Trans Advocates and Equality Louisiana are full of grief and sadness today as we learn that a transgender woman has been held captive and tortured by three individuals in the Ajax area of Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana. She was systematically abused, assaulted and dehumanized by her captors for months. Through her remarkable strength and resilient hope, she fought to survive and successfully escaped captivity. Though law enforcement are often not allies to transgender women, she was courageous enough to work with them in order to prevent her captors from doing this to anyone else in the future.

The deprivation of freedom and basic human dignity demonstrated in this case serve as a reminder that things like this happen in the cities and parishes of our state and are far too often ignored by the media and law enforcement. It is not uncommon for transgender women to be subjected to violence that results in their death. LGBT people, people of color, women and many other populations experience unacceptable treatment on a daily basis. This woman survived, while many women do not.

We believe that everyone has a responsibility to fight for the basic humanity and dignity of all people. We have a responsibility to create communities and a society where acts like this don’t happen. We can create healthier, less violent communities by ensuring that everyone has access to employment, housing, and education without fear of discrimination, harassment, and violence. We hope you will join us as we work toward ending all violence and discrimination against transgender women and everyone else based on their gender identity, gender expression, or sexual orientation because when it comes to ensuring human dignity, we can never compromise.

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