03/15/21 UPDATE: We now have 50 kits available for distribution! To request your free self-defense kit, please review the process and terms of eligibility and liability here.
03/10/21 UPDATE: We raised over $5,400! Thank you to new and old friends, near and far, who made this mutual aid project possible. Because of the overwhelming support, we’ve been able to add an additional life-saving emergency device to all kits: a 2-in-1 seatbelt cutter / window breaker via Resqme. Big shout outs to our friends at Lets Get Free and Meow Defense for their generous contributions, and to all who’ve amplified our call to equip Black, Indigenous, POC Trans community members in the 412, amidst ongoing transphobic violence and white supremacist terror. We keep us safe.
The Pittsburgh Trans Defense Fund is a mutual aid project working to equip BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) TGNC (Transgender, Gender-Non-Conforming) community members with the self-defense tools they need to protect themselves from transphobic white supremacist violence in Pittsburgh and Allegheny County.
Organized by volunteers with TransYOUniting (TY), this project is situated within TY’s broader mission to provide life saving housing and food assistance, youth mentorship, and transportation to trans Pittsburghers thru radical resource distribution and direct action.
In 2019, the City of Pittsburgh’s Gender Equity Commission released a 96 page white paper revealing Pittsburgh to be “the least livable city in America for Black people”. Last year, 44 known trans people were murdered in the US: one of the deadliest years on record for our community. The existing apartheid conditions of our city are exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and rise of anti-Black, transphobic hate violence. Having access to self-defense materials is vital for the survival of our chosen trans family: WE KEEP US SAFE.
OUR SHORT TERM GOAL is to raise $5,000 between JAN 25 and FEB 25, providing up to 65 Black and brown trans individuals in the Pittsburgh region (*Black trans women and sex workers prioritized) with FREE self-defense kits (1 kit includes: 1 stun gun, 1 pepper pray, 1 personal alarm, 1 2-in-1 window-breaker/seatbelt cutter, and 1 kit guide). Funds raised thru this mutual aid project go directly towards purchasing, shipping, and distribution costs associated with kits. Excess funds raised will go into a second round of self-defense kits pending capacity and community need or distributed to Pittsburgh BIPOC TGNC community members seeking housing assistance.*Between Aug 2020 and Jan 2021, TransYOUniting helped 250 trans people secure housing in western PA.