The brutality of the case of Roberta Nascimento Silva, a 33-year-old transvestite who died after having her body burned by a 16-year-old teenager in Recife, illustrates a reality that is worsening in Pernambuco: that of violence against the LGBTQIA+ population. In 2020, the state was the record holder in records of crimes against this public, according to the Brazilian Yearbook of Public Security, prepared by the Brazilian Public Security Forum and published on the 15th.
The survey shows that there were 604 incidents of intentional bodily injury, 78.7% more than in 2019; 39 of intentional homicides, with a 30% increase; and 47 rape, 104.3% higher rate.
These are the largest absolute numbers among all federative units. Nevertheless, Pernambuco follows the country’s trend: Brazil registered a 20.9% increase in intentional bodily harm, 24.7% in intentional homicides and 20.5% in rapes of LGBTIA+ people.
::Co-deputy says that transphobia in Recife “was at great risk of being beaten”::
In the document, the Forum points to a relationship between the expansion of these types of crimes with the speech and government of President Jair Bolsonaro (no party), which would mobilize anti-LGBT and anti-feminist agendas as a political platform.
“An emblematic example of the convergence between pocketnarism and LGBTphobia is revealed by the research entitled ‘Politics and faith among military, civil and federal police officers in Brazil’, produced by FBSP in partnership with the company Decode, which indicated a high incidence of LGBTphobic behavior among police officers military in social networks, the same group in which greater support for the president and institutional rupture was detected, sometimes having as a proxy, or symbol, the antagonism towards the Supreme Court”, says an excerpt of the report.
Also read: What makes Brazil a leader in violence against transgender people
National coordinator of the National Network of Black Lesbians and Bisexual Women Feminists (Candaces), Rivânia Rodrigues, agrees: “This increase [da violência] it’s big, and it’s the result of a national misrule that drives people to be LGBTQIfobic. It’s a misogynist government and this delights a lot those who are currently in the uniform, in the armed forces, who see the president of the republic as a myth and instigate this greater side of prejudice”, he defends.
Pernambuco is a pioneer in recording crimes against the LGBTQIA+ population
The political articulator of the Pernambuco Articulation and Movement for Transvestites and Transsexuals (Amotrans-PE), Jana Castro considers that the high numbers in Pernambuco actually reflect the increase in the notification of cases of LGBTphobia. “Violence has always existed, it is only being reported and denounced. Brazil, unfortunately, is the country that kills the most LGBT people in the world”, he comments.
Regarding the indices, the Pernambuco Social Defense Secretariat (SDS) responds that the state was one of only five that provided complete data on willful bodily harm, intentional homicide and rape against LGBTQIA+ people to the Brazilian Yearbook of Public Security 2021.
“In addition to its commitment to transparency and the quality of statistics, characteristics highlighted by the Yearbook itself, Pernambuco was one of the pioneer states in recording crimes against the LGBTQIA+ population. In 2013, a state decree was issued determining the inclusion of CVLI victims based on sexual identity or affective orientation in criminal statistics. Underreporting, which may be happening in other states, is a strong ally of violence,” he says in a statement.
Pernambuco is third in the ranking of the Yearbook, which analyzes whether federative units have a reliable and good quality registration and disclosure system, taking into account registered information, lost information, convergence and transparency.
SDS adds that security forces “are responding to all cases of homicides against LGBTQIA+ people by identifying and arresting perpetrators.”
Also according to a note from the Secretariat, “these actions, together with the prevention work developed by the Committee for the Prevention and Confrontation of LGBTFobic Violence, installed this year by Governor Paulo Câmara, collaborate to reduce crimes of this nature.”
Despite this, Rivânia Rodrigues, from Candace, criticizes the functioning of the system of state policies aimed at this audience. “Pernambuco is the state that has the most LGBTQIA+ mechanism but does not have the budget to make this policy flow. There is another aggravating factor, that none is state policy, it is government policy”, he points out. “We realize that if the policy is not transversal in the various layers that the Executive works, from health to education, we will not be able to reach this population from the point of view of training. It’s no use being a state with many mechanisms, and they don’t work”, he concludes.
Source: BoF Pernambuco
Edition: Vanessa Gonzaga