Monica Roberts

Tyra Hunter Medical Transphobia Death 15th Anniversary

Filed By Monica Roberts | August 08, 2010 11:30 AM | comments

Filed in: Gay Icons and History, Living, Politics, Transgender & Intersex
Tags: African-American, LGBT history, medical, Monica Roberts, trans POC, transphobia

Yesterday marked another sad anniversary.

ts-Tyra Hunter_50th and C street.jpgIt was the 15th anniversary of the death of Tyra Hunter on August 7, 1995 at the hands of Washington DC transphobes.

Transphobes who sadly held the titles of doctor, nurse and emergency medical technician.

While her mother Margie Hunter eventually won a multimillion dollar settlement for EMT Adrian Williams' reprehensible actions at the corner of 50th and C Streets in Southeast DC, I'd wager she'd be willing to give up every penny to have her child back.

Unfortunately the lack of medical treatment and medical transphobia that prematurely ended Tyra's life is still being experienced by transpeople 15 years later.

A protest sadly will be taking place in front of Ball Memorial Hospital in Muncie, IN, on August 17 to detail another instance of medical personnel behaving badly.

Transpeople continue to be disrespected and refused needed treatment by transphobic people in the medical profession. That lack of compassionate treatment and disrespect can have serious consequences not only for our health, but for people's lives.

People in the medical profession need to have the message driven home to them that your faith based hatred of transpeople does not override your responsibilities to expeditiously do your job in an emergency situation and do no harm to that trans patient.

If it takes them repeatedly losing some money out of their wallets and purses or pickets in front of medical facilities that disrespect us to drive that message home, then so be it.

Medical transphobia has the potential to kill people, and we owe it to Tyra Hunter's memory to make sure the medical profession and society at large hears that message.

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This was good to read about. I didn't know about it myself.

The most horrible thing in the article was "not only were none of the firefighters at the scene disciplined, but Adrian Williams subsequently received a promotion."

I wonder where he is now. I wonder what kind of life he leads on his taxpayer-funded salary. I wonder whether he thinks about the life he actively helped end.

Medical transphobia kills people. Tyra Hunter and Robert Eads are no longer on this planet because of it and it needs to stop.

The more things change, the more they stay the same, eh?

One bit of good news to report though - the protest has been called off. The hospital has apologized and is working with INTRAA, the local trans group, to relook at all of their policies. Austen did a post about it on Friday; she broke the story originally.

Did Tyra's mom win a multi-million dollar settlement? I remember reading it was like a $50,000 Court of Claims settlement.

Melissa Dunagan | August 9, 2010 5:16 AM

I am sure the a hold Adrian Williams didn't lose any sleep over killing Tyra Hunter. And he more likely though he was doing Gods work for him.Him and his coworks should been put in jail for manslaughter.

Where did "God" and "faith based" enter the picture?

Were these people religious zealots, or is this just another opportunity to tar all Christians with a broad brush?

Freud, and the march of psychiatry for decades after him -- especially after WW2 -- generated a lot of society's prejudice, including religious prejudice, and it was not a religious enterprise at all.

The abuse I suffered in Jr. High was severe, but not religious. In fact, for most of my life, most of the Christians I've known have been the most tolerant and loving people in my world.

This visceral hatred seems to stem more from the AIDS epidemic. FRC calls homosexuality a public health menace, and it's relatively new doctrine that being gay means being condemned. Flies in the face of religious orthodoxy, in fact.

Not that it's much of a leap for fundamentalists, whose core belief is, after all: If you don't agree with me, you're wrong.