Trans activist Indya Moore honored transgender victims of gun violence at the Daily Front Row’s annual Fashion Media Awards.
On Thursday, the Pose actor took the stage to receive the award for Cover of the Year for their appearance in Elle’s June 2019 issue. “Some of you may be uncomfortable with the politics of my speech,” they told the audience. “Right now, the Supreme Court is voting on whether or not trans people can access employment, shelter and health care in the same ways that you all have access…it’s hard to celebrate being celebrated at a time when people like me are being murdered.”
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Moore wanted to use the moment to focus on the ongoing violence against black transgender women in the United States. Seventeen trans people have been killed so far in 2019, the majority of whom died as a result of gun injuries.
"On this day, that I'm celebrated and awarded for being visible, I decided to bring them with me,” they said. “I'm wearing them on my ears as earrings.”
During the awards gala, Moore carried an image of Bailey Reeves with them on their clutch. Reeves, who was just 17 at the time of her death, was killed in Baltimore over Labor Day weekend. After sustaining multiple gunshot wounds, her body was discovered in the street. Witnesses who responded to the scene of the crime told the local news station WMAR that Reeves was found in a pool of her own blood.
Earlier this year, Moore paid tribute to some of the other women killed in 2019 — including Muhlaysia Booker, Ashanti Carmon, and Jazzaline Ware — by working with their stylist, Ian Cogneato, to create keepsake earrings featuring framed photos of the victims.
Moore has always always been vocal on the violence faced by trans women of color. In June of this year the actor took to Twitter to condemn the New York jail complex Rikers Island after a trans woman and friend, Layleen Polanco, died in one of the prison’s cells.
Moore was met with a standing ovation during the awards, but they claimed the “best award and the award that we all deserve is to be able to get home safe."
"I accept this award in good faith that my recognition doesn't lead to the erasure of other trans and GNC folks who also deserve healthcare, housing, safety and visibility, magazine covers, runways, leading film and TV roles, doctorate degrees, high school diplomas, college educations, and families, lovers, and representation everywhere and in every space, each and every one of us and everyone that we know; our families and friends occupied,” they added.
Other winners at the ceremony included Zendaya for Fashion Force of the Year and Kate Moss for Style Icon of the Year. Graham Norton acted as the evening’s host.