Bamby Salcedo's speech on Victoria Arellano

by SCHA-LA Tuesday, Sep. 11, 2007 at 5:02 AM

English Transcript of the speech that Bamby Salcedo gave at the vigil.

Justice for Victoria!

Good evening everyone, we are here to let the authorities and political representatives that is not ok the atrocities that continue to happen to our community.

Victoria’s case is very similar to the cases that many of us transgender go through, unfortunately something very sad and dramatic has to happen for our community to react and open their eyes, even though Victoria sadly was an example we are her to say enough is enough!!

I am one of those trans woman who more than in one occasion had to go through mistreatments and injustice from the authorities, I’ve lived what is being beaten and mistreated by the authorities, those who are suppose to protect you while we are incarcerated…

It is not our fault that certain people cant deal with their own prejudice, it is not our fault to be how we are, it is not our fault that HIV and AIDS exists in the world, it is not our fault that we become infected with HIV. One thing I know for sure, we deserve to live like every other person however that may be and one of the ways to live with dignity is to be able to have access to HIV medications that can prolong our lives.

The transgender community has rights inside and outside jails and institutions, those rights are HUMAN RIGHTS! Everyone earns them when one is born, no one entity or human being has a right to decide to end our lives but in Victoria’s case this was exactly what happened, “they” decided not to give her the medications that she needed to prolong her life.

I blame the inadequate system that exists in the federal prisons of the whole country for not provide the needed capacity building, appropriate education, and skills to be able to combat and deal with HIV and ultimately AIDS.

Its almost impossible to believe that after twenty six years in to this pandemic there is still ignorance in the federal judicial system and do not have the appropriate means to provide competent care for people who has HIV/AIDS, just in California there are some institutions that I know like California City, Santa Ana, and San Pedro how we are witnessing now. I can almost assure you that the majority of doctors and nurses that work at these facilities have no knowledge of new updated medications that help prolong people’s lives.

We understand that keeping us in jails is a business, but our lives are not for your business, the system has no right to kill us, if you are keeping us in the jails and detention centers for your business, the least you can do is provide us with the appropriate medications for HIV/AIDS and hormones.

We have a right to live and you must give us medications for HIV/AIDS, the government has very easy access to this medications, obviously they don’t care about us other wise they would already had taken steps in to account… Enough! If the government doesn’t care we have people that care for and about us… we have our families, our community, we are human beings and we are valuable!

Enough injustices, stop discriminating against us because of who we are!! To those who judge us… have you ever done a personal inventory?

No one has the right to take any body’s life, no one had a right to denied Victoria her medications, and no one has a right to mistreat my community! My community is each one of you, when you are discriminated against, I am being discriminated against, when you are mistreated, I am being mistreated,

I was Victoria ones when I was in jail trying to get help from the guards when more than ones I was mistreated, today I am Victoria yelling out loud: "Enough injustice for our sisters and brothers!"

We are calling our elected officials to hear our needs and to understand that we don’t deserve this type of injustice.

That is why I say….

Que queremos? Justicia!

Cuando? Ahora!

Victoria is not alone!!