REPORT: Violence against transgender Coloradans increased by more than 100% in 2010
July 12, 2011 | 4:10 pm
(Updated: February 22, 2013 | 4:18 pm)
Reported violence against the Colorado transgender community increased by 135 percent in 2010, according to the latest report on hate violence by the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs.
Nationwide the report showed the second highest murder rate ever recorded and transgender people and people of color are the most targeted communities for severe hate violence, the authors said on a conference call Tuesday morning.
In 2010, NCAVP documented 27-anti LGBT murders. That number is up 23 percent from 2009. None of the murders were from Colorado, said Colorado Anti-Violence Program’s Director of Advocacy Sandhya Luther.
However, at least one gay man, Matias Mondragon, was killed in a possible bias-motivated crime outside of a bar in Broomfield. However, that investigation is still ongoing and authorities have yet to classify it as a hate crime.
“Despite Colorado’s transgender inclusive state hate crimes and non-discrimination laws, transgender people continue to be disproportionately targeted for violence,” said Crystal Middlestadt, CAVP’s director of training and eduction, in a statement. “Given this reality, it’s critical we commit adequate time, resources and money toward hate violence prevention strategies that center the leadership and experiences of the transgender community as well as ensure programming and resources of victim service agencies reflecting the needs of transgender survivors.”
Overall reporting of hate related violence was down 21 percent in Colorado. However, Luther said it is most likely a reporting error, not a true representation of events.
“This may be due to a genuine drop in the incidents around the state, although it is more likely due to transition in advocacy staff within CAVP and the elimination of a part-time CAVP employee,” she said.
The number of attacks reported against transgender women went up from 12 in 2009 to 17 in 2010. It is not clear, Luther cautioned, if these numbers indicate an actual rise in attacks or if there was more reporting because of CAVP’s increased outreach after the Angie Zapata murder trial.
If there is an actual increase of violence toward the transgender community, Luther said, it could be due to the rising awareness of the trans community.
“(Historically) increased visibility does tend to increase more violence,” she said. ”When there is a perception that a group of people can be easily targeted, more people begin to think they can get away with it.”
Nationwide, the study also found:
- 70 percent of the 27 reported hate murder victims in 2010 were LGBT and HIV-affected people of color, which represented 44 percent of total survivors and victims.
- Transgender women made up 44 percent of the 27 reported hate murders in 2010, while representing only 11 percent of total survivors and victims.
- CCAVP documented a 13 percent increase in hate violence incidents from 2009 to 2010, as well as a much greater increase in the severity of violence.