Statements by HHS Leaders Commemorating Transgender Day of Remembrance on November 20, 2022

In commemoration of Transgender Day of Remembrance, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra, Assistant Secretary for Health Admiral Rachel Levine, Director of the HHS Office for Civil Rights Melanie Fontes Rainer, Assistant Secretary for Children and Families January Contreras, and Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance Use Miriam E. Delphin-Rittmon issued the following statements to honor those who have lost their lives to anti-transgender violence:

“Violence or discrimination of any type against a person because of who they are is wrong and inhumane. This Transgender Day of Remembrance, I call on my fellow Americans to stand up against hate and take a moment to honor the lives of those transgender and gender-diverse Americans lost due to hate and senseless violence. At HHS, we see you and stand with you.” – HHS Secretary, Xavier Becerra

“Transgender Day of Remembrance is a solemn day to remember those we have lost as a result of transphobia. In this land of the free that so many advocates have fought and died for, we should all have the right to live our lives authentically. President Biden and the whole administration supports us, and supports an equitable future. I call on you all to put aside your differences and stand for love and acceptance in honor of those we have lost to violence and hate.” – HHS Assistant Secretary for Health, ADM Rachel Levine

“Hate, vitriol, and violence have no place in our health care system, yet every day we are seeing reports of people being denied care, bullied, or facing violence. We also hear from doctors and providers that they too are facing violence for providing service to trans and gender-diverse patients. Our nation’s civil rights laws play a critical role in helping give people a voice in these hard times, and the Office for Civil Rights continues to do all it can to help ensure people can receive health care free from violence and discrimination.” – HHS Office for Civil Rights Director, Melanie Fontes Rainer

“Like their family, friends, and neighbors, transgender Americans deserve to live long lives of dignity and fulfillment. On this Transgender Day of Remembrance, we mourn the lives lost due to hate and violence, and we recommit to fulfilling the promise of a free and safe America for all.” – HHS Assistant Secretary for Children and Families, January Contreras

“In remembrance today of the lives lost to anti-transgender violence, and in recognition of the families and loved ones left behind, we pledge to continue striving for equitable access to behavioral health care for everyone – including transgender Americans, so that all people can achieve optimal health and well-being.” – HHS Assistant Secretary for Mental Health and Substance UseMiriam E. Delphin-Rittmon, Ph.D.

Every November 20 is Transgender Day of Remembrance. This day honors the memories of the lives of transgender and gender-diverse people tragically lost to violence and the countless members of the community who face discrimination, violence, and harassment.

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