Equality Florida wants action from Rick Scott on Jacksonville, Orlando trans murders

Rick Scott noir

Jacksonville and Orlando have been the scenes of murders of transgender African-American women this year, and Equality Florida wants action.

Representatives from the group were in Jacksonville Tuesday, petitioning the Jacksonville City Council for redress during the public comment period. At the end of that period, a representative from the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office vowed that there would be a liaison to the community to address mounting concerns.

However, the group wants action and reaction from the state’s chief executive. And to that end, Equality Florida issued an “action alert” Wednesday.

“Last week, we received heartbreaking news that Sasha Garden from Orlando became the fourth known transgender woman of color murdered in Florida this year,” the alert email reads.

“Sasha’s death follows the murders of three black trans women in Jacksonville: Celine Walker, Antash’a English, and Cathalina Christina James. Alarmingly, their murders represent over 25% of the known anti-transgender murders in the entire nation this year.

“The rate of murderous violence towards Florida’s transgender community is terrifying and needs to be addressed. Yet, Governor Rick Scott has remained notably quiet as the number of killings continues to mount,” the group asserted.

“We need Governor Scott to speak out – clearly and immediately – to condemn this pattern of violence targeting transgender women and direct state law enforcement agencies to assist in the investigations,” the group added.

When asked about the killings a month ago in Jacksonville by Florida Politics, Scott offered a non-specific response.

“You hate when anything like this happens,” Scott said, “and I hope whoever did it is caught and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

Scott’s team referred us to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. We await the department’s reply.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski



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