Woman who fled to the US in search of a better life is sixth trans person killed in US in 2022

A woman who fled Honduras to Texas in search of a better life has become the sixth trans person killed in the US in 2022.

Paloma Vázquez, a spirited activist who sought refuge from transphobic violence, herself became the latest victim of what experts have described as an “epidemic of violence”.

The 29-year-old with big dreams of a life without fear was shot to death in her southwest Houston Apartment on Dunlap and Clarewood street on 26 February.

According to the Houston Police Department, the door to the property was unlocked with no signs of forced entry when officers arrived at around 8pm. She was discovered by her boyfriend and appeared to have been deceased since the morning.

Vázquez had emigrated to Texas some six months ago, her friends recalled in conversations with ABC 13. She was “very excited about decorating,” one recalled, having only recently moved into her new apartment.

“As most trans women who are here from Latin America, they are here because they are scared of being killed in their own country,” the friend, Gia Pacheco, said.

“Whenever a trans person is killed, they are killed because they are trans.”

According to Sin Violencia LGBTI, a regional information network, more than 1,100 trans and non-binary people were killed in Latin America from 2014 to 2020. At least 208 LGBT+ people were slain in Honduras.

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