‘We dream of a life free from discrimination’: Help Yren and Mariana exercise their rights as trans women in Paraguay (W4R 2022)

As trans women, Yren and Mariana have been fighting for their rights for years, including being able to change their legal names and obtain documents that match their gender identity. Yet, they’ve been bullied, physically attacked and prevented from speaking out about the issues they face in their daily lives as trans women.

What is happening in Paraguay for LGBTIQ+?

We are Yren and Mariana, and we’re trans women and activists from Paraguay. We’ve been fighting for years for LGBTIQ+ rights and against the discrimination trans people face.

Trans people in Paraguay cannot legally change their names or obtain identity documents that match their gender identity. This makes it difficult to access work, education and healthcare services, which perpetuates a cycle of poverty and inequality.

Everyone deserves to live a life free from discrimination. Instead, we’ve been bullied, physically attacked and prevented from speaking out about the issues we face. Due to Paraguay being a very conservative country, LGBTIQ+ demonstrations are often banned by the authorities, and some have even been violently targeted.

In face of the discrimination we experience, we say “We are not a danger, we are in danger”. We just want to live our lives freely without fear, and to enjoy our rights.

With documentation that matches who we are, the state would be acknowledging us as trans women, and not imposing on us an identity that is not ours. This would be a huge step in our historical struggle for equality.

People power works – how you can help

Millions of compassionate people like you take part in Write for Rights – Amnesty’s annual global campaign, which is on right now. For more than 20 years, we have seen the power of collective voices in action. People unjustly imprisoned freed, trumped-up charges dropped, and those who abuse human rights brought to justice.

Let’s stand with Yren and Mariana by calling on Paraguay to legally recognise the identity of trans people. Together, we demand change for trans people everywhere.

When courageous people protest, they make the world a better place. We must protect the right to protest wherever it is restricted and whenever it is at risk.

For Write for Rights 2022, we are taking action for brave individuals from around the world, who have all paid a great price for speaking truth to power. We run Write for Rights every year because it works – real change happens when ordinary people come together to take action.

Learn more about Write for Rights. Write a letter, change a life – including yours.