Monday, August 4, 2014

Activism Opportunity: Petition to Release Assaulted Trans Woman


If you didn't already know, most prisons in the US and similar countries have a habit of imprisoning trans women with male inmates, as they don't view them as "real" women. As you might imagine, this leaves them extremely vulnerable to sexual assault and rape in a prison system that cares very little about the safety and rehabilitation of the prison population, especially as it becomes increasingly privatized.

Recently, another victim of this horrible and sanctioned form of violence came to light. Marichuy Leal Gamino is a trans woman who was put in the male prison population, harassed and threatened with rape for weeks, and of course the prison staff did nothing about it. She filed complaints, and nothing was done. As a result, she was eventually raped by her cell mate. The prison's response? Try to cover it up by pressuring her to sign a statement saying it wasn't rape.

This is disgusting and completely unacceptable on so many levels. Discrimination against trans women makes it very difficult for them to get jobs, meaning they have to resort to illegal means to earn money. Then they get arrested and imprisoned with men, and get no help from the state when they're predictably assaulted.

If ICE cannot protect this vulnerable inmate, then they should not be allowed to detain her. Please sign this petition calling for Marichuy's release. After you submit your signature, you'll be given the option to email and call the prison to further voice your outrage.

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