The memorial site will house the remains of 149 transgender women, some of whom met violent deaths
Activists in Mexico have built and inaugurated a mausoleum specifically for transgender women, the Associated Press reported on Friday. The burial site is the first of its kind in the country, and proponents say it will provide a dignified resting place for victims of violence, and those unclaimed by their families.
Located in the Iztapalapa borough of Mexico City, the mausoleum is built of white masonry with colored stained glass inserts. Inside the building, a small altar is decorated in the blue and pink of the transgender pride flag, and features a memorial to Paola Buenrostro, a transgender prostitute who was shot dead in 2016.
"Thank you Paola, because in your name we were able to reach an important milestone for the trans community," activist Kenya Cuevas said during the inauguration ceremony on Thursday.
Cuevas said that some of those interred at the mausoleum were murdered, while others died of natural causes but had no family members to claim their bodies.
Mexico has the world's second-highest murder rate among transgender people, with 25 transgender women killed in the first six months of this year, according to LGBTQ activists.
However, with more than 15,000 murders committed across the country in that same period, transgender people are actually slightly less likely to be murdered in Mexico than anyone else, as they account for 0.25% of the population and 0.17% of all murder victims, according to data from Mexico's National Statistics Institute and Statista.
More than 58% of the 586 LGBTQ people killed in Mexico between 2017 and July 2023 were transgender women, according to the Associated Press' figures.