NEW YORK — in response to the murder of Brian “Egypt” Powers, a Black transgender man in Akron, Ohio, and Tiffany Harris, a Black transgender woman in the Bronx, NY, David J. Johns, the Executive Director of the National Black Justice Coalition, released the following statement:
“While the national focus on the effort to ensure #AllBlackLivesMatter shifts to the upcoming presidential election and the unrelenting pressures associated with COVID-19 Black trans people are still being murdered.

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NEW YORK — At the beginning of this month, the Obama era equal access rule was rolled back by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). The equal access rule made it so shelters receiving funding from HUD are required to provide housing to transgender people living in shelters on the basis of their gender identity, rather than on the basis of biological sex at birth. With the repeal of this rule, shelters are now permitted to discriminate against members of the trans community on grounds of their own personal religious beliefs. 

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NEW YORK — in response to news of Congressman John Lewis’ passing, David J. Johns, the Executive Director of the National Black Justice Coalition, released the following statement:
“I am crying. To me, Congressman John Lewis was a superhero, the epitome of a civil servant, a personal hero. We even share the same birthday. It’s one thing to know something is imminent, to accept that at some point each of us will be called home, if we’ve done our job as a good and faithful servant. Knowing this doesn’t make accepting this news any easier. 

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NEW YORK — In the past week at least 5 Black trans women were violently murdered. On Tuesday, June 30, Merci Mack, a 22-year-old in Dallas, Texas, was found murdered from an apparent gunshot wound to the head. In Louisiana, Draya McCarty was found killed in Baton Rogue and Shakie Peters was found killed in Amite. Cameron Breon — also known as Bree Black — was also found shot in Pompano Beach, Florida on July 3, at just 27 years old. Social media has also reported that Tatiana Hall was murdered in Philadelphia, but little additional information has been made publicly available. These deaths — all in the last week — bring the number of trans people violently killed this year to 22.

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NEW YORK — Yesterday, Merci Mack, a 22-year-old Black transgender woman in Dallas, Texas, was found murdered from an apparent gunshot wound to the head. She is the 4th Black transgender woman killed during Pride month, and the 19th trans person violently killed, thus far in 2020, that we know of. In response to this tragic news, Executive Director of the National Black Justice Coalition David J. Johns released the following statement:
“What do you do when you don’t have the capacity to wrap your head around the pain and trauma a community of people continues to experience and you know that your feelings aren’t half of what’s required to show up as a member of that community? You continue the work and insist that others, who purport to believe that #BlackLivesMatter, also get engaged. 

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