In March, a social media meme went viral stating that 14 Black and Latinx girls went missing from the DC area within a 24-hour span. While the statistic was incorrect, it sparked a much-needed conversation about missing girls of color in America, and the overall lack of attention from the media and white communities. This was glaringly obvious at a recent town hall meeting in DC on the missing girls, which was attended almost exclusively by Black folks, and left many women of color wondering where the white women they marched with in January were. For many white women, it may be painful to hear that they have not shown up for their sisters of color; it is also painful for women of color to be ignored by their white sisters when children of color are missing.
While all missing youth face obstacles and are at risk of some kind of violence, girls of color, particularly Black and Indigenous girls, face intersecting threats of gendered violence, racial violence, and mistreatment and violence within systems and institutions that are supposed to serve them. Trans, queer, and gender nonconforming young people, as well as disabled youth, also face intersecting violence and represent a disproportionate share of homeless youth.
The response to #MissingGirlsDC has shown just how pervasive this violence is - and how invisible it is to those who are not directly impacted by it. It is not invisible. We all know it is happening. And we all must act.
Today, Women’s March is launching an awareness campaign to connect people, huddles, and communities, to resources around the issue of the missing Black, Latinx, and Indigenous girls. We are committed to supporting, advocating for, and uplifting the work of local organizations that have long been dedicated to finding and caring for these girls, and for all missing youth - including trans and gender nonconforming youth. Below, we’ve included some organizations based around the country for you to consider supporting - whether by attending meetings and events, volunteering, spreading the word on social media, or through financial support.
We cannot and will not rest until all women and girls and femmes are able to live free from violence.