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Trans People Four Times More Likely to Be Victims of Violent Crimes, Study Shows

Transgender people are over four times more likely to be victims of violent crimes than their cisgender counterparts, according to a new study from the Williams Institute.

According to data from the 2017 and 2018 National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS), transgender people ages 16 and older experienced 86.2 violent victimizations – which include rape, sexual assault, and aggravated or simple assault – per 1,000 people, compared to 21.7 victimizations per 1,000 for cisgender people. Transgender women and men had higher rates of violent victimization (86.1 and 107.5 per 1,000, respectively) than cisgender women and men (23.7 and 19.8 per 1,000, respectively).

One in four transgender women who were victimized labeled the incident a hate crime, compared to less than one in ten cisgender women.

Transgender people were also twice as likely to experience property victimization, which the NCVS defines as burglary/trespassing, motor-vehicle theft, and property theft: 214. 1 per 1,000 households versus 101 per 1,000 households for cisgender people.

“The media has rightly given attention to the 2020 increase in murders of transgender women of color, said lead author Andrew R. Flores, Affiliated Scholar at the Williams Institute. “Our study shows that both transgender women and men are also highly vulnerable to non-fatal physical and material victimization.”

Study author Ilan H. Meyer, Distinguished Senior Scholar of Public Policy at the Williams Institute, said the research shows that these higher rates of victimization are related to “low well-being, including suicide thoughts and attempts.”

“The results underscore the urgent need for effective policies and interventions that consider high rates of victimization experience by transgender people,” Meyer concluded.