Ms. magazine  -- more than a magazine a movement

SIGN UP FOR MS. DIGEST, JOBS, NEWS AND ALERTS

FEMINIST WIRE NEWSBRIEFS

ABOUT
SEE CURRENT ISSUE
SHOP MS. STORE
MS. IN THE CLASSROOM
FEMINIST DAILY WIRE
FEMINIST RESOURCES
PRESS
JOBS AT MS.
READ BACK ISSUES
CONTACT
RSS (XML)
 
feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

January-16-14

Trans* Activist CeCe McDonald Released Early From Men's Prison

CeCe McDonald, a transgender woman, was sentenced to 41 months in a men's prison in July 2012 for defending herself from a hate crime. On Monday, she was released early.

In June 2011, McDonald was involved in an altercation with ex-convict and white supremacist Dean Schmitz and his friends, in which they taunted her with homophobic, transphobic, and racist slurs and threw broken glass at her face. During the incident, she brandished a pair of scissors to defend herself, and Schmitz died from sustaining stab wounds to the chest. McDonald pled guilty as part of a plea deal to second-degree manslaughter in June 2012, though she maintained that she had acted in self-defense.

As a trans* woman of color, McDonald's case exemplifies the high levels of violence faced by her own community and the mishandlings of these cases which so often occur in the hands of law enforcement. "It's time we stop re-victimizing young transgender women of color by pushing them into the criminal system," said Masen Davis, executive director of the Transgender Law Center. "We all need to come together and find ways to prevent the extraordinarily high rates of violence and discrimination against trans women so that there will be no more cases like CeCe's."

McDonald's case sparked outrage, and her supporters maintained a website to keep folks updated on her case, her sentence, and her time in prison. After her release, supporters tweeted messages using #BecauseofCeCe to commemorate what her case had done to bring awareness and spark activism around the treatment of trans* women in prison. Laverne Cox, transgender actress and advocate and cast member on Orange is the New Black, a show about a women's prison based on a true story, is working to complete a documentary about CeCe's case and the experience of trans* women in men's prisons. She greeted McDonald upon her release.

McDonald is not yet ready to release a public statement about her case or her experience.

Media Resources: Feminist Newswire 7/5/2012; Huffington Post Gay Voices 1/13/2014; Jezebel 1/13/14; ABC News 1/13/14; The Advocate 1/14/2014


© Feminist Majority Foundation, publisher of Ms. magazine

If you liked this story, consider making a tax-deductible donation to support Ms. magazine.

 

 

Send to a Friend
Their
Your
Comments
(optional)


More Feminist News

5/22/2015 Senate Votes to Advance "Fast Tracking" of Dangerous Trade Agreement - The US Senate voted 62 to 38 yesterday to advance "fast track" trade legislation, just one week after Senate Democrats filibustered the controversial bill that would allow President Obama to force Congress to vote up-or-down on the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement. The TPP is a far-reaching trade agreement that has faced staunch opposition from a broad coalition of labor, environmental, women's rights, and human rights groups. . . .
 
5/22/2015 New York Politicians, Advocates, and Activists Have Come Together to Protect Nail Salon Workers - Following a report by the New York Times on the exploitation of nail salon workers almost two weeks ago, New York state and city officials have partnered with advocates and volunteers to bring comprehensive educational programs and labor reforms to the 5,000 licensed salons in the state. Governor Andrew Cuomo (D), who ordered emergency measures last week in the wake of the report - including posting workers' rights information in salons in different languages, shutting down unlicensed salons, implementing new safety requirements, and creating an educational campaign aimed at employees and managers - has introduced a legislative package aimed at building upon those reforms and leading the way for long-term protection for nail salon workers. . . .
 
5/20/2015 New York Attorney General Moves to Expand Access to Contraceptives - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman introduced the Comprehensive Contraception Coverage Act of 2015 last week to enhance the availability of contraception for New Yorkers. The bill codifies the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA) in New York state law while strengthening and expanding many of its provisions. . . .