Today’s Doodle honours Janana Dutra, a Brazilian social activist and lawyer who is widely regarded as the country’s first transgender person to practise law and a leader of the Brazilian LGBTQIA+ movement.
On this day in 1960, Janana Dutra was born in the Canindé area of Brazil’s northern Ceará state. She began to face homophobic discrimination at the age of 14, but her enormous family’s support never wavered. Dutra followed her sister to Fortaleza, where she began her journey to becoming an advocate for the LGBTQIA+ community.
Dutra graduated from the University of Fortaleza with a legal degree in 1986, becoming the first transgender graduate to be accepted into the Ordem dos Advogados do Brasil (Brazilian National Bar Association).
During the 1980s, Dutra advanced her career by collaborating with the Ministry of Health to create Brazil’s first HIV prevention programme aimed at the transgender community.
Dutra was also a founding member of the Grupo de Resistência Asa Branca (White Wing Resistance Group) and the first president of the Associaço de Travestis do Ceará (ATRAC – Ceará Transvestites’ Association), a groundbreaking non-profit dedicated to providing social and legal support for the LGBTQIA+ community.
Dutra spent a career visiting conferences, seminars, and round tables to push for equality, and was known to always carry a copy of an anti-homophobia ordinance passed by her community.
In 2011, the Janana Dutra LGBT Reference Center was established in Fortaleza, and it continues Dutra’s aim of promoting LGBTQIA+ people’s human rights to this day.
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