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Tom Sal | CDMX, Mexico

Organization: mvv

Casa de las Muñecas Tiresias AC - Paola Buenrostro was opened in order to give shelter to transgender women, especially vulnerable during COVID-19 pandemic in Mexico City. We took images two days after first women arrived, right after the shelter was opened. Most of them are immigrants from other parts of Central America. Literally just taken off the streets. Hotels they used to work and live in are now shut by the government. The idea is to provide the necessary tools so that they can be self-sufficient and give them support so that they can reincorporate in the society and stay away from the streets where some of them were sex-workers.

This remote location was chosen by the Mexico City's government. As if they were trying to hide it. Technically it's not even Mexico City any more, it's Iztacalco the State of Mexico, far outskirts of Mexico City. Being transgender is not uncommon, but it is a taboo and a reason for discrimination, sometimes even murder.

Casa de las Muñecas - first shelter for transgender women and sex-workers in Mexico City

There are around 7,000 sex-workers in Mexico City, estimated by the government. They are among the most vulnerable during COVID-19 pandemic. Fear of contracting the virus keeps their clients away, the government shuttered the hotels where many of them lived and worked. Most of them are hungry and homeless now. This is one of very few places, if not the only one, which provides shelter and food for transgender women, some of them sex-workers. Pictures were taken two days after the opening. Most women here are refugees from Central America. Casa de las Muñecas can only accommodate about 30 people. Not a lot considering the population of Mexico City, 20+ million.

- The idea is to prepare everyone to start a normal life. To start a legitimate business, so we do classes in mathematics, teach how to read and write, when necessary, and we do basic business classes as well - Catherinne Márquez, a psychologist at the casa.

production / interviews: Erika Samayoa

This is a probono project in progress, your support is always wolcome.

tomsal@protonmail.com

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