The Center for HIV Law and Policy joined with LGBT/HIV, immigration, and disability rights advocates to file a friend-of-the-court (amicus) brief supporting asylum protection and relief for Mr. Doe*, a gay Latino immigrant living with HIV who would face persecution if he were deported to Mexico. In this case, an immigration judge and the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) denied immigration protection citing legal and social advances for gay and lesbian people in Mexico, including marriage equality. As the friend-of-the-court brief explains, despite some progress, there is extensive evidence confirming the entrenched prejudice and persecution of LGBT people and those living with HIV in Mexico. LGBT individuals and those living with HIV are systematically beaten, raped, and murdered. Mexican law enforcement officials and governmental authorities often ignore – and even actively participate in – violence against LGBT individuals. As this case was being adjudicated, Mr. Doe was diagnosed with HIV. Coupled with his sexual orientation, an HIV diagnosis substantially increases the risk and likelihood that he will be persecuted if he is deported to Mexico. People living with HIV, particularly those who are LGBT, are subject to persecution in Mexico—from police misconduct and government-sanctioned violence and brutality, to the denial of access to lifesaving medical care and treatment. The brief was filed by The Center for HIV Law and Policy, Public Law Center, Lambda Legal, National Immigrant Justice Center, HIV Law Project, Immigration Equality, Disability Rights Legal Center, and the Asian and Pacific Islander Wellness Center.
*This is a pseudonym.