Taja Gabrielle de Jesus was a beautiful soul who was unapologetically unafraid to always be herself. She had an infectious energy that, combined with her sweet nature, made her a delight to everyone whose path she crossed. And when she did cross your path, she always had a story to share. It might have made you laugh or it might have made you cry, but it was always truly, authentically her. She was well loved by everyone for her kind heart, inspirational spirit and impeccable style–she loved to rock those flashy outfits.

On Sunday, February 1, Taja was brutally stabbed and became the 5th trans woman to be murdered in the US in 2015. That’s more than one murder a week. And all of them were women of color. She is also the fourth trans woman of color in California to be murdered in the last four months. We must put an end to this continual dynamic. It saddens and angers us every time someone from our community is taken from us. It devastates us when it’s someone we know and love.

The Trans* Activists for Justice and Accountability Coalition (“TAJA”) is united in anger and outrage over her murder. TAJA’s Coalition includes leadership from: TGI Justice Project, El/La Para Translatinas, Trans March, Community United Against Violence, Transgender Law Center, St. James Infirmary, The SF LGBT Center, Trans Employment Program (TEEI), TRANS:THRIVE at the API Wellness Center, Dimensions Clinic, Center of Excellence for Transgender Health, and Trans Life at the SF AIDS Foundation.