Tell the Department of Justice to Address Violence Against Trans Women in Puerto Rico

The Trans-Latin@ Coalition has come up with a letter to send to the Department of Justice to address the violence against transgender women in Puerto Rico. The letter is a response to the ongoing deaths and human rights violations of trans women in Puerto Rico, and we need to urge the U.S. to uphold civil rights. Several organizations have signed on in support of this letter.  Please ask your agencies to sign on to this letter so that we can eliminate these atrocities, do not miss the opportunity of your agency being included.  Email your information and organizations information by Tuesday, August 3rd to: Babmy Salcedo, CC let us know if your able to support.


We ask that you forward this widely to your contacts, lets get as many organizations signed on to this letter as possible…



July 13, 2010


Mr. Thomas E. Perez
Assistant Attorney General
Civil Rights Division
Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Office of the Assistant Attorney General, Main Washington, D.C. 20530


Dear Mr. Perez,


The purpose of this letter is to ask you to address the acts of violence that are continually happening in Puerto Rico. Since 2009, there have been four brutal murders involving transgender women. These horrific incidents have specifically targeted a vulnerable population.  Local authorities and law enforcement agencies continue to blame transgender women for these incidents, encouraging further violence against this community.


It is our government’s responsibility to protect everyone, including the LGBT community and given the numbers of these types of crimes we ask for a strong and quick response.  The civil rights of transgender individuals in Puerto Rico are being violated by not being fully protected by local authorities. In addition, there are no protective laws that specifically address the civil rights of transgender individuals in Puerto Rico.


We need to make sure that the civil rights of transgender people are not violated.  We ask that  you work with the Puerto Rican government to ensure that the Puerto Rican government protects the  civil rights of the transgender community. We ask that you exercise your oversight power to ensure the safety of transgender women in Puerto Rico.


Please contact Bamby Salcedo Trans-Latin@ Coalition at:<> should you have any questions.


Supporting agencies: Equality California, Radical Women, Mad Clik, Inc Gay & Lesbian Rainbow Pages, The National Latino AIDS Action Network, St. Johns Well Child and Family Centers, The Los Angeles Drug and Alcohol Task Force, Lower East Side Harm Reduction Center in NY, Drug Policy Alliance, The Transgender Law Center, Bienestar Human Services, Community HIV/AIDS Mobilization Project (CHAMP), Pacientes de Sida pro Politica Sana, The Red Circle Project, APLA, Unid@s The Latin@ LGBT Civil Rights Organization.


Bamby Salcedo


Transgender Harm Reduction
Project Coordinator
Childrens Hospital Los Angeles

Published by Emilia Dunham, MPP, MBA

Emilia Dunham is currently a Project Manager at MassHealth/Department of Public Health, and formerly the Project Manager of the Life Skills project at The Fenway Institute, an HIV intervention study for young transgender women. Emilia worked at Fenway for 7 years, first as a Quality Control and Regulatory Assistant mainly involved with biomedical HIV prevention trials, before serving as the Program Associate for The Network for LGBT Health Equity, a network instrumental in many national LGBT health policy improvements. She is also involved with the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition, serving as a Steering Committee member and the Policy Committee Co-Chair, an organization largely responsible for the recent passage of the Trans Rights Bill. Additionally she serves as a member of the Massachusetts Commission on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Youth, Co-Chair of the Recommendations Committee. Emilia received a Bachelor’s degree from Northeastern University. There she served as President of the LGBTQ student group where she planned programs such as Pride Week, Transgender Day of Remembrance, and AIDS Week. In addition, she advocated for LGBTQ inclusive policies and programming on campus such as a Gender Neutral Housing program, an LGBTQ Center and the expansion of Women’s Studies to Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies. Emilia recently earned a Master of Public Policy and Master of Business Administration in health policy and management from the Brandeis Heller School School for Social Policy and Management.

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