Published on June 8th, 2012 | by Wild Gender
Trans Activists and Allies Demand End to NYPD’s “Stop and Frisk”
QUEENS, N.Y. – Members of the transgender community rallied yesterday for an end to the New York City practice of “stop and frisk,” a tactic used by NYPD officers to stop people for searches based on whoever they deem suspicious. “Stop and frisk” unfairly targets people of color, immigrants, trans community members, and promotes widespread abuses by police.
Last year there were more than 685,000 “stop and frisks,” this year that number is set to rise to more than 800,000. According to the New York Civil Liberties Union, Black and Latino men accounted for more than 40 percent last year’s stops.
“Make the Road New York“ – an organization that builds the power of Latino and working class communities to achieve dignity and justice through organizing, policy innovation, transformative education, and survival services–says that New York’s 115th Precinct, which polices Jackson Heights with the 110th Precinct, has the third-highest rate of “stop and frisk” cases in the city.
“When (transgender people) are stopped and frisked, they usually suffer physical violence, verbal harassment, often times a groping of their genitals,” said Karina Claudio, an organizer with Make the Road New York, to NY1.
“They just like, ‘are you man or woman?’” said Nicole Teyuca, who spoke out against the policy. “And I’m like ‘what do you want me to be?’ In that moment, they just got out of the car, put me against the wall and they tell me you are under arrest.”
On Wednesday, several LGBTQIA, civil rights, faith and labor organizations held a press conference at the Stonewall Inn to rally together against “stop and frisk” and to announce joint support for the June 17th silent march against police harassment. Regarding “stop and frisk,” LGBT people are being targeted at alarmingly high rates, specifically trans women of color who are disproportionately affected by hate violence and police violence.
Rev. Al Sharpton of the National Action Network took the stage at the press conference, commending the LGBT community’s struggle for liberation and fairness, while stressing the need for our varied communities to work together.
“We must fight this together and then fight in other areas across the board where this is discrimination […] we must all see each other’s spots as spots of hope for all of us,” he said.
On Father’s Day, Sunday, June 17, 2012 at 3 pm on the corner of at 110th, west of 5th, civil rights, queer, faith, labor and community groups will lead a silent march against “stop and frisk.” For more information on how to get involved, visit ‘End Stop and Frisk.’You can tweet about the march using #silentmarchnyc or #endstopandfrisk and spread the word via Facebook.