Gov. Wolf: Pennsylvania Must Protect LGBTQ Citizens from Violence, Discrimination

Harrisburg, PA - May 21, 2019 - Across the country, there has been an alarming trend of violence against LGBTQ citizens, especially trans women of color. Governor Tom Wolf and the Pennsylvania Commission on LGBTQ Affairs today reaffirmed its support for the LGBTQ community, denounced this violence and urged the approval of pending bills to provide LGBTQ citizens additional protections from hate crimes and ensure comprehensive, non-discrimination protections.

"Despite the progress we have made towards equality, Pennsylvania remains glaringly behind our neighbors on equality and protections for LGBTQ citizens," Governor Wolf said. "Now more than ever, we must ensure protections for LGBTQ citizens. The trend of violence against trans women of color is disturbing but this violence is not new and we've watched as it has escalated. We owe it to our citizens to provide them the protections that ensure their safety. We mourn the loss of Michelle 'Tamika' Washington, a black trans woman and longtime advocate for the transgender community, who was senselessly murdered on Sunday. Let us use this moment to make these long-overdue changes without further delay."

"We must not remain silent and we must never forget those that were lost to violence," Todd Snovel, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Commission on LGBTQ Affairs, said. "We will never forget Tamika's legacy of fighting for what is right, we will say her name, and we will not accept this violence as normal. Let us pledge our collective energy towards passing comprehensive, non-discrimination protections and expanding our hate crimes laws to protect our LGBTQ citizens from violence."

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