• Categories
  • Archives

Dandarah, a Brazilian App Offers Panic Button and Safe Spaces to LGBT+ Population

A participant at the São Paulo's Gay Parade in Brazil

An app that maps safe spaces for LGBT+ people and features a panic button to warn friends of risk was launched on Wednesday in Brazil, one of the deadliest countries to be gay or trans.

The app is called Dandarah, after a trans woman who was murdered in 2017, and received its initial funding from Jean Wyllys, one of Brazil’s few openly gay congressmen who fled the country this year due to death threats.

“The LGBTQ community in Brazil as a whole, and especially the transgender group, is facing a large scope of violence,” said University of Toronto’s Monica Malta, a mental health expert who has studied violence faced by trans women in Brazil.

“We hope that this app will be a strategy to help us (address the violence),” said Malta, who helped develop the app.

Despite recent rulings in favor of LGBT+ rights, including a Supreme Court decision in June making homophobia a crime, religious conservatism and widespread violence often make Brazil a hostile country for gay and trans people.

Brazil had the highest number of trans murders globally – at 130 – in the 12 months up to Sept. 30, according to the Trans Murder Monitoring project. Almost 40% of deaths worldwide took place in the 200 million-strong nation.

Dandarah follows a global trend of digital platforms helping to keep LGBT+ people safe, with the GeoSure app, which rates risk for travelers in 30,000 neighborhoods worldwide, adding an LGBT+ safety category to its service last year.

The Brazilian app uses crowdsourcing to designate risky areas for gay and trans people by letting users mark locations where violent incidents occur, as well as police stations and safe spaces, like trans-friendly health clinics and charities.

If they feel in danger, its panic button allows users to alert five registered contacts who receive the user’s location and phone numbers for emergency services.

According to watchdog group Grupo Gay da Bahia, 320 LGBT+ people were murdered in Brazil last year.

Malta decided to launch the app after her study of nearly 3,000 trans women across Brazil revealed their “terrible and widespread experience of violence and discrimination”.

“The key issue for us to think about was … how could we build upon everything the community had and foster something that could give them a better tool to not only report (violence) but also reach out and support each other,” Malta said.

The rights groups and researchers behind Dandarah hope it will help paint a clearer picture of anti-LGBT+ violence in Brazil, where there are no official statistics on these attacks and many crimes go unreported for fear of discrimination.

“It encourages the population to report crimes so we can reduce omission and impunity,” said Bruna Benevides, a trans researcher and activist involved in the project, adding that the app is hosted on a secure server to protect users’ identities.

This article was produced by the Thomson Reuters Foundation. Visit them at http://www.thisisplace.org

Tags:

  • Show Comments (0)

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Ads

You May Also Like

Protesters burn buildings and fight the police in Brasília - José Cruz/ABr

Responding to Pressure, Brazil President Removes Army from Capital

Brazilian President Michel Temer has called troops back off the streets of Brasília following ...

The Guardians of the Amazon recently destroyed a logging truck they discovered in their territory.

Brazil Logging Mafia Kills Another Guardian of the Amazon

A leader of an Amazon tribe acclaimed for its environmental defenders has been killed, ...

Police in Vitória, in the state of Espírito Santo repress protests during June 30 general strike - Fernando Madeira/A Gazeta

Brazil’s General Strike Didn’t Stop the Country and Brought Little Damage

Brazil went through Friday’s general strike, the second of its kind called for by ...

Protest in Rio against government's reforms - Fernando Frazão/ABr

Brazilians Pour onto Streets Demanding a Halt to Reforms and the President’s Ousting

Brazilians took to the streets in a nationwide protest on Wednesday against President Michel ...

Guatemalan women fleeing their country

In Brazil, US VP Sends Message: Build Your Lives in Your Homeland

US Vice President, Mike Pence, said that Latin American migrants who “cannot come legally” ...

Wild Bunch

A nationwide truckers’ strike that resulted in the blockade of several major highways throughout ...