End Racial Profiling Act of 2015 introduced with gender & SOGI protections!

***FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE***

Contact: Verónica Bayetti Flores 212-929-0562 |veronica@streetwiseandsafe.org

End Racial Profiling Act of 2015 Introduced with Protections Against Profiling based on Sexual Orientation, Gender, and Gender Identity

New protections address multiple ways LGBTQ youth of color are profiled

April 22, 2015 (WASHINGTON, DC) – Streetwise and Safe joins civil rights and LGBT organizations across the country in celebrating today’s introduction of the End Racial Profiling Act of 2015 which, consistent with the recently issued U.S. Department of Justice guidance on profiling and the recommendations of the Interim Report of the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing, expands the ban on racial profiling to include profiling based on gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation.

“Racial profiling is a critical issue for LGBTQ youth of color,” said Chris Bilal, Streetwise and Safe (SAS) campaign staff.  “Across the country, LGBTQ and gender non-conforming youth of color report alarmingly high rates of police profiling resulting in myriad collateral consequences. Non-heterosexual youth are more likely to be stopped by the police and experience greater criminal justice sanctions not explained by greater involvement in violating the law or engaging in transgressive behavior.”

“The End Racial Profiling Act has always been an important piece of legislation for LGBTQ youth of color,” said Verónica Bayetti Flores, Policy Coordinator at Streetwise and Safe (SAS). “An End Racial Profiling Act with a profiling ban and enforcement mechanisms to address the multiple ways that people of color experience racial profiling – including profiling based on gender, gender identity and sexual orientation – would go a long way toward keeping LGBTQ youth of color safer from discriminatory policing. We are grateful to this historic legislation’s sponsors for their vision and commitment to addressing the multiple ways LGBTQ youth of color experience profiling.”

The End Racial Profiling Act of 2015 was introduced by Senator Bill Cardin (D – MD) and Congressman John Conyers (D – MI).

Streetwise and Safe (SAS) is a New York City based organization focused on the profiling and criminalization of LGBTQ youth of color. Along with allied organizations, SAS called for the passage of an End Racial Profiling Act inclusive of gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation in the 2014 report A Roadmap for Change: Federal Policy Recommendations for Addressing the Criminalization of LGBT People and People Living with HIV.

####

Senator Ben Cardin

509 Hart Senate Office Building

Washington, DC 20510

Representative John Conyers

2426 Rayburn House Office Building

Washington, DC 20515

Dear Senator Cardin & Representative Conyers,

As members of the civil rights community, we look forward to the introduction of a comprehensive End Racial Profiling Act (ERPA) that would, consistent with the recently issued U.S. Department of Justice guidance on profiling and the recommendations of the Interim Report of the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing, expand the ban on racial profiling to include profiling based on gender, gender identity, and sexual orientation.

As members of Black communities, communities of color, American Indian and Alaska Native peoples, homeless and low-income communities, and immigrant communities, women and LGBT people of color experience discriminatory policing in many of the same ways as other members of communities of color, as well as in ways that are specific to their gender, gender identity and/or sexual orientation.i A recent national survey of LGBT people found that one fourth of respondents who had contact with police experienced at least one type of misconduct or harassment, including profiling, false arrests, verbal or physical assault, or sexual harassment or assault.ii LGBT people of color, LGBT people under 30, low-income LGBT people, and transgender respondents were much more likely to report police misconduct or harassment than their counterparts.iii LGBT people of color were five times more likely to be asked about their immigration status than white LGBT respondents.iv Across the country, non-heterosexual youth are more likely to be stopped by the police and experience greater criminal justice sanctions not explained by greater involvement in violating the law or engaging in transgressive behavior. Further, analysis of stop and frisk data for New York City reveals that the racial disparities in stops, frisks and arrests are identical for women and men.

It is therefore critical that both ERPA’s profiling ban and the enforcement mechanisms it creates address the multiple ways that people of color experience racial profiling, including profiling based on gender, gender identity and sexual orientation. The End Racial Profiling Act has always been an important piece of legislation for women and for the LGBT community, and we are grateful that the End Racial Profiling

Act of 2015 recognizes that racial profiling often takes gender and sexuality-specific forms, and offers comprehensive remedies that will ensure that all members of our communities will be protected from all of the forms of racial profiling we experience.

We thank you for your leadership in championing this legislation that will bring us closer to the promise of equal protection of laws for all.

Sincerely,

American Civil Liberties Union, Arab American Association of New York, Black and Pink, Branching Seedz of Resistance, BreakOUT, Brooklyn Movement Center, Center for Constitutional Rights, Center for HIV Law and Policy, Center for Popular Democracy, Colorado Anti-Violence Project, ColorOfChange, Committee Against Anti-Asian Violence (CAAAV), Community Justice Project, Inc., Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, Equity Project, Gay-Straight Alliance Network, Gender Justice LA, Global Action Project, Lambda Legal, Legal Aid Society, Missourians Organizing for Reform and Empowerment, National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum, National Black Justice Coalition, National Center for Lesbian Rights, National Center for Transgender Equality, National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs, National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health, National LGBTQ Task Force, National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance, Out Now, Picture The Homeless, Providence Youth Student Movement, Streetwise and Safe, VOCAL, Young Women United, Christy Mallory, Amira Hasenbush, Brad Sears,

Discrimination and Harassment by Law Enforcement Officers in the LGBT

i

Community, (The Williams Institute, 2015), available at:

http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/category/research/violence-crime/;

Lambda Legal, Protected and Served? (2014), available at: http://www.lambdalegal.org/protected-and-served/police; BreakOUT!

and National Council on Crime and Delinquency, We Deserve Better: A Report on Policing by and For Queer and Trans Youth

(2014), available at

http://www.youthbreakout.org/sites/g/files/g189161/f/201410/WE%20DESERVE%20BETTER%20REPORT.pdf; Joey L.

Mogul, Andrea J. Ritchie, and Kay Whitlock, Queer (In)Justice; The Criminalization of LGBT People in the United States

(Boston: Beacon Press, 2011); Make the Road New York, Transgressive Policing: Police Abuse of LGBTQ Communities of

Color in Jackson Heights (2012), available at

http://www.maketheroad.org/pix_reports/MRNY_Transgressive_Policing_Full_Report_10.23.12B.pdf; Frank H. Galvan and

Mohsen Bazargen, Interactions of Latina Transgender Women with Law Enforcement (Bienestar, 2012), available at

http://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/Galvan-Bazargan-Interactions-April-2012.pdf; Brett G. Stoudt, Michelle

Fine, and Madeline Fox, Growing Up Policed in the Age of Aggressive Policing Policies (New York Law School Law Review,

vol. 56 2011-2012); Kathryn E. W. Himmelstein and Hannah Brückner, Criminal-Justice and School Sanctions Against

Nonheterosexual Youth: A National Longitudinal Study, (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2011); Amnesty International,

Stonewalled: Police Abuse and Misconduct Against LGBT People in the United States (2005), available at

http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/AMR51/122/2005/en/2200113d-d4bd-11dd-8a23-d58a49c0d652/amr511222005en.pdf

ii Lambda Legal, Protected and Served? (2012), available at http://www.lambdalegal.org/protected-and-served

iii Id.

iv Id.

Kathryn E. W. Himmelstein and Hannah Brückner, Criminal-Justice and School Sanctions Against Nonheterosexual Youth: A

v

National Longitudinal Study, (American Academy of Pediatrics, 2011).

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One Response to End Racial Profiling Act of 2015 introduced with gender & SOGI protections!

  1. Reblogged this on juniorstopdiscriminationtodaymayema and commented:
    Report: LGBT people of color at high risk of poverty
    http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2015/4/23/lgbt-people-of-color-more-likely-to-face-poverty.html
    Discrimination and lack of legal protections put LGBT minorities at a financial disadvantage
    April 23, 2015 1:19PM ET
    by Marisa Taylor @marisahtaylor
    LGBT people of color face a high risk of suffering from poverty because of discrimination and lack of strong legal protections, according to a new report released on Thursday.

    An estimated 3 million American adults identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) people of color, according to the report co-authored by the left-leaning Center for American Progress, a think tank, and the LGBT-focused advocacy group the Movement Advancement Project.

    Black, Latino, Native American and Asian LGBT people are more likely to be poor than white LGBT people, the report said, with transgender people suffering from poverty most of all.

    “Disproportionate numbers of LGBT people of color live in places that lack any explicit state-level protections for LGBT people,” Ineke Mushovic, executive director of the Movement Advancement Project, said in a release. “This means that LGBT people of color face a high risk of economic harm from anti-LGBT laws.”

    While the report (PDF) said research in this area is limited, LGBT people of color are more likely than white LGBT people to suffer from poverty. For example, black Americans in same-sex couples are more than twice as likely to live in poverty than those in opposite-sex married couples.

    While the average unemployment rate among the general LGBT population in the U.S. hovers around 8 percent, according to the report, the number reaches 15 percent among that population who are black, 14 percent among those who are Latino, and 11 percent among those who are Asian/Pacific Islander.

    But transgender people of color are most threatened by extreme poverty: Some 28 percent of Latino trans people, 34 percent of black trans people, 23 percent of Native American trans people and 18 percent of Asian or Pacific Islander trans people are extremely poor, with annual household incomes of $10,000 or less. That’s compared with 15 percent of the trans population as a whole that suffers from extreme poverty.

    Being an LGBT racial minority has an even stronger impact when it comes to wage discrimination, the report said, because black and Latino workers make between 17 to 43 percent less than white and Asian workers.

    “Additionally, workers of color, and likely LGBT workers of color, are heavily concentrated in low-wage jobs that lack opportunities for advancement or benefits,” the authors wrote.

    The federal Civil Rights Act protects against workplace discrimination based on “sex,” the report points out, but it may not be specific enough to apply to gay, bisexual and lesbian workers.

    In absence of a federal law explicitly protecting LGBT people against job discrimination, those living in the 22 states and the District of Columbia that do have laws protecting LGBT people against employment discrimination have better luck. However, just 19 of those states protect against employment discrimination based on both sexual orientation and gender identity expression, and in the rest of the country, LGBT employees can be fired based on their sexuality or gender identity.

    When it comes to health care, LGBT people of color are less likely to have health insurance than whites and more likely to experience discrimination from health workers. For example, while 82 percent of white LGBT people are insured, just 61 percent of Latino LGBT people, 71 percent of Asian LGBT people and 79 percent of black LGBT people have health insurance.

    The report, citing a survey from Lambda Legal, (PDF), a civil rights organization, said that 7 percent of gay, lesbian and bisexual people of color have experienced physically rough or abusive treatment in health care settings, 11 percent have been denied care and 14 percent were spoken to harshly. Among transgender people of color, it was far worse — 29 percent were denied care, 25 percent were spoken to harshly, and health care workers would not even touch 18 percent of them.

    The authors of the report recommended that lawmakers strengthen federal and state-level laws to explicitly protect against housing, employment and public accommodation discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. They also recommend that government agencies and other researchers who do population surveys should include questions about gender identity and sexual orientation so they can have a better idea about how to better serve the needs of the LGBT population.

    “Eliminating the injustice and the financial penalties facing LGBT Americans of color simply requires that they, and their families, be treated equally under the law,” the report said.

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