LOS ANGELES (June 8, 2018) Two of AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) affinity groups, FLUX and LOUD (Latino Outreach and Understanding Division) have strongly condemned ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) for its treatment of undocumented immigrants in US-funded detention centers, and in particular as it pertains to gender nonconforming individuals. This condemnation comes after the latest reported casualty, asylum-seeker Roxsana Hernández, a 33-year old Central American transgender woman of color, who died while in custody from an apparent heart attack complicated with dehydration, pneumonia, and other health conditions related to HIV/AIDS.
Roxsana represents the hundreds and hundreds of trans* people who leave their country of origin fleeing sexual abuse and attacks which put their lives in danger. Roxsana was sexually assaulted by gang members in Honduras where she was also infected with HIV. Activists claim that Roxsana died because the proper medical care, as required in detention centers, was denied.
“Transgender women of color face insurmountable barriers in the general community and it is obvious that they run the same risk while in custody of a government agency like ICE” said Queen Victoria Ortega, Chairperson of FLUX.
Patricia Bermúdez, Co-Chair of LOUD, declared that, “Unless we raise our voices and organize, our own government will continue to leave our community vulnerable to discrimination, violence and death.”
Officers of both, FLUX and LOUD, have issued statements calling for an end to the inhumane treatment of all detained immigrants, and have made a call to the general public to integrate trans* people into their community, businesses, and social networks in order to stop discrimination against people based on gender identity and expression. FLUX and LOUD have vowed to intensify their work in defense of this population.
FLUX is dedicated to raising awareness, increasing visibility, providing support, and giving voice for trans* and gender nonconforming individuals. LOUD addresses the social and health disparities that threaten the Latino community through innovative programmatic, marketing, and direct-action strategies.