Report Details Anti-LGBT Discrimination, Violence in Kenya Refugee Camp

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10/21/2021

(WB) A new report released on Wednesday indicates nearly all of the LGBT people who live in a Kenya refugee camp have experienced discrimination and violence because of their sexual orientation and/or gender identity. The Organization for Refuge, Asylum and Migration and Rainbow Railroad in May 2021 surveyed 58 LGBTQ asylum seekers who live at the Kakuma refugee camp and the Kalobeyei Integrated Settlement that opened in 2016 to help alleviate overcrowding at Kakuma. The groups also interviewed 18 “key informants.” More than 90% of the LGBTQ asylum seekers who spoke with ORAM and Rainbow Railroad said they have been “verbally assaulted.” Eighty-three percent of them indicated they suffered “physical violence,” with 26% of them reporting sexual assault. All of the transgender respondents “reported having experienced physical assault,” with 67% of them “reporting sexual assault.” Eighty-eight percent of respondents said they had been “denied police assistance due to their sexual identity.” Nearly half of the respondents told ORAM and Rainbow Railroad they had to be “relocated from their allocated shelters to alternative accommodation due to the constant abuses directed at them by neighbors.” Kakuma, which is located in northwest Kenya near the country’s border with Uganda and South Sudan, is one of two refugee camps the U.N. Refugee Agency operates in the East African nation. The other, Dadaab, is located near Kenya’s border with Somalia.

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