Fernanda Milan is a 22-year-old transgender woman and activist from Guatemala.
In 2009, Fernanda fled persecution to seek safety and asylum in Denmark. Fernanda has now been told that Danish law does not recognise gender identity as a motive for persecution.
This is despite a 2011 Directive of the European Parliament (2011/95/EU Article 10d), which specifically mentions gender identity as a reason for persecution.
Fernanda has been informed she will be deported back to Guatemala on 17 September.
During her detention in the Sandholmlejren Centre for asylum seekers, Fernanda suffered appalling discrimination and sexual violence because the Danish authorities refused to accommodate her in the women’s unit and would only recognise her as a man. Fernanda was raped on more than one occasion. The authorities denied Fernanda the hormone replacement therapy she has taken since the age of fourteen because she didn’t fulfil their “criteria” for the psychiatric diagnosis “transsexual”.
Fernanda’s deportation back to Guatemala will place her life in great jeopardy. In Guatemala, transgender people are treated as social outcasts, denied employment and access to healthcare, regularly intimidated and abused by the police, and subject to shocking levels of transphobic violence and hate murders.
Fernanda faces arrest and torture by the Guatemalan authorities.