Valentina is a transgender woman from Colombia. There, she was bullied in school by classmates and teachers because of her perceived sexual orientation and effeminate mannerisms. At one point, she was threatened with death if she did not leave her neighborhood along with other “undesirables.” When she went to the police, they denied her protection and blamed Valentina for her persecution. Now that she has received asylum in the United States, Valentina is a proud advocate for LGBTQ immigrants and recently went to Washington D.C. to share her story with lawmakers.
Photo credit: Steven Laxton, stevenlaxton.com