Washington DC, September 30, 2021.- With the aim of contributing to the promotion and protection of the rights of transmasculine and non-binary persons assigned women at birth (AFAB) in Peru, the Institute on Race, Equality and Rights Human (Race and Equality) launched on September 24, 2021 the first report that demonstrates the situation of this population in the country. The report includes recommendations to the State, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), and the United Nations Organization to guarantee their human rights.
The report, entitled “Bodies and Resistance that TRANSgress the Pandemic: Transmasculinities and Non-Binary AFAB People in Peru,” was launched through a virtual event with the participation of representatives of the transmasculine and non-binary movement in Peru, including two individuals who helped produce the report, and the United Nations Independent Expert on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity, Victor Madrigal-Borloz.
“In Peru, the rights of trans people are not yet recognized, starting with the limitations to access the right to identity, which means that other fundamental rights cannot be accessed,” said the Executive Director of Race and Equality, Carlos Quesada. He also mentioned that when talking about the trans population, one usually thinks only of trans women, which means that the experiences and demands of transmasculine and non-binary AFAB people are not reflected in public policies and, on certain occasions, are also not present in the agenda of the LGBTI + movement.
Zuleika Rivera, LGBTI Program Officer for Race and Equality, indicated that the preparation of this report sought to understand the situation of transmasculine and non-binary AFAB people in Peru. She highlighted that one of the most important findings being the fact that the discrimination and violence that this population faces begins in the nucleus family, something that – Rivera said – is determined by the lack of information and the stigma that predominates in society regarding people with diverse sexual orientation and gender identity.
It should be noted that the completion of this report included a documentary review, data processing of transmasculinities and non-binary AFAB people who participated in the first survey for LGBTI people, which was carried out by the National Institute of Statistics (INEI) in 2017; a self-applied virtual interview called, “The Situation of Trans Masculine, Trans Men, Non-Binary Transmasculines and Non-Binary AFAB People Before and During the COVID-19 Situation in Peru,” and eight semi-structured interviews.
The report was presented by Alithu Bazan Talavera, a member of the report’s research team, non-binary trans activist and researcher, and by Santiago Balvin Gutiérrez, also part of the research team, non-binary transmasculine activist and member of the organization Rosa Rabiosa. The third individual who made up the research team is activist, researcher and teacher Denisse Castillo Matos, who is also part of the organization Más Igualdad Perú.
During the presentation Bazan mentioned that most of the people interviewed reported that they began to experience their identities from the age of 22, due to little or no information on the trans and non-binary spectrum. The activist and researcher pointed out that non-recognition in the family environment entails a series of violations and a systematic exclusion of trans-masculine and non-binary people.
Balvin Gutiérrez included in his presentation that in the case of trans men and trans-masculininities, 85.44% have identity documents that do not represent their desired social name, and in the case of non-binary people, 48.57% expressed the same sentiments. In addition, among both populations, 70% reported difficulties when exercising their right to vote due their identity documents not corresponding with their gender identity and/or gender expression and for fear of suffering violence.
Significance of the report
Bruno Montenegro, National Coordinator of Transmasculine Fraternity-Peru, described the report as “historic” and said it will contribute to generate great advances in the struggle of the transmasculine and non-binary population. Montenegro further stated that all the information and evidence contained in this report will serve to demystify the belief that trans and transmasculinity men have privileges only because they are male or because they identify with masculinity.
“Transmasculinities do suffer violence even though we identify ourselves from masculinity (…) This report is important to demystify transmasculinities and put our realities on the agenda. Trans men also abort, trans men also decide to gestate, trans men also suffer so-called corrective rapes,” he emphasized.
The United Nations Independent Expert on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity, Víctor Madrigal-Borloz, highlighted the relevance and significance of this report. “This report has a particular impact on Peru, but this information can also be raised as a working theory regionally and globally. For me it has been incredibly revealing in levels, perspectives and consciences that were not at all visible in my mandate,” he affirmed.
“There is data that, in addition, in its deep personalization call us to reflect; the testimonial is of great value and this study is extraordinary in that sense,” added Madrigal-Borloz.
The report, “Bodies and Resistance that TRANSgress the Pandemic: Transmasculinities and Non-Binary AFAB People in Peru,” contains recommendations to the State, the IACHR and the UN, with the aim of contributing to the adoption of public policies and/or measures in favor of the human rights of trans-masculine and non-binary people. In the case of the State, we recommend that the State urgently adopts a gender identity law.
In the case of the IACHR, one of the recommendations is that it creates dialogues with civil society organizations and independent activists related to the population of transmasculinities and non-binary AFAB people. In the case of the UN, the report recommends that the Independent Expert on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity make an official visit to Peru and publish a report with specific recommendations for the protection of this population.
Access and download the report in Spanish here: https://bit.ly/3uxtklx
Executive summary in English here: https://bit.ly/3o5oZ7S