After years of organizing the Walking While Trans ban has finally been repealed in the New York State legislature. The bill now moves to the Governor’s desk.
Black and brown trans women have been at the forefront of this fight.
For decades, Penal code, 240.37, – “loitering for the purpose of prostitution” – has been used to profile and criminalize Black and brown cisgender women, non-binary people, immigrants, and low-income communities. It gave police excessive discretion and emboldened biased policing.
Violations and convictions under this statute made it hard for community members to access employment, housing, and adjust immigration status and could even lead to deportation.
Our members have shared horrific stories about being arrested for merely standing outside, speaking to one another, or walking from the subway to their home.
Norma Ureiro, a member of our Trans Immigrant Project who was on the frontlines in the fight to repeal the ban said: “For more than 40 years, Black and brown transgender women like me have been harassed, profiled, and arrested for expressing our gender identity in public. I am thrilled to hear that we’ve made history and repealed the Walking While Trans Ban…I am excited that we will be able to provide protection to future generations of transgender women, reduce the interactions with police, and violence against trans women of color.”
We’d like to thank members of the #WalkingWhileTrans ban coalition, members of our Trans Immigrant Project, and allies who made calls, participated in actions, sent text messages, and were in solidarity with trans communities.
We now urge Governor Cuomo to sign the bill into law!
¡Sí se pudo!