The State Board of Pardons and Paroles finally handed down its parole decision for Trans(forming) member Ky Peterson on Inauguration Day – January 20, 2017 – though no-one informed Ky. He first learned the devastating news three days later, from us, during a visit. The Board set Ky’s “tentative parole month” (TPM) for July 2021. By then, he will have been locked up nearly 10 years.
No words can describe our immense grief, disappointment, shock, and -yes- anger that Ky is still not free, and continues to be punished for surviving. Our hearts are heavy, and we find no comfort knowing that the Board’s decision could have been even worse.
Despite the profound and ongoing injustice he has faced as an incarcerated Black trans man, Ky has remained deeply committed to his faith, goals, love for his family, and his hope and passion to create a better and more just world- especially for trans people. He told us, “Even if they keep me in here, they can never keep me down!”
We must continue to share his story, intensify our support and demand his release. We ask that you join us in taking the following actions to support Ky and other criminalized survivors of gendered violence:
- Write to Ky! Ky has said, especially during the hardest times, “Knowing I’ve got support really keeps me going.” Please send messages electronically through Jpay (jpay.com), or by regular mail. Ky may not be able to respond to all letters.
- Stay Up-to-Date on Ky’s Struggle. Follow Ky’s facebook page and blog!
- Sign the Petition to Demand Ky’s Release
- Donate to put money on Ky’s books
- Participate in the #SurvivedAndPunished Week of Action. This project connects and lifts up freedom struggles of several people facing criminalization and/or deportation for surviving rape, intimate partner violence, and other forms of gender violence. Today they are highlighting Ky’s story (see @survivepunish on Twitter). There are calls to take action in support of nearly every one of these freedom struggles- please plug in and get involved!
- Participate in the #Free Ky Project
The FKP is a photo campaign spreading awareness about Ky Peterson, a Black trans man imprisoned for killing his rapist in self defense & the untold stories of Trans Men of Color.