AMA Responds To ‘Epidemic’ Of Violence Against Transgender Community by Dawn Ennis Contributor June 15, 2019

The American Medical Association is taking a public stand to stem what it calls “the epidemic of violence against the transgender community, especially the amplified physical dangers faced by transgender people of color,” as well as discrimination faced by the entire LGBTQ community.

The AMA’s House of Delegates voted this month to adopt a plan to help bring national attention to this problem following an uptick in the number of fatal attacks against trans people.

“According to available tracking, fatal anti-transgender violence in the U.S. is on the rise and most victims were black transgender women,” said AMA Board Member S. Bobby Mukkamala, M.D., in a statement. While organizations like Human Rights Campaign and LGBTQ news media regularly report on the murders of trans Americans, mainstream news media too often report crimes without accurate information about a victim’s gender identity, and local police have a long way to go to assist federal law enforcement in properly cataloguing hate crimes against trans and gender non-conforming individuals.

Dr. Mukkamala conceded that is part of the problem.

“The number of victims could be even higher due to underreporting and better data collection by law enforcement is needed to create strategies that will prevent anti-transgender violence,” he said.

So far in 2019, the death toll stands at ten, and all of the victims were trans women of color. HRC tabulated 26 transgender victims of murder in 2018, but the number could easily be much higher, and advocates say the number of reported attacks has increased in recent years.