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Honoring the Life & Leadership of Lorena Borjas

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Dear Beloved Community,

We write with heavy hearts and deep care for all in our communities who are holding such immense grief while caring for each other.

Lorena Borjas—a visionary leader of our movements—passed on Monday, March 30, due to complications related to COVID-19. The Sylvia Rivera Law Project joins so many organizations and communities in uplifting Lorena’s extraordinary commitment to trans liberation: to her sisters. Lorena worked closely with our Immigrant Justice Project and was an inspiration to many generations of the SRLP collective and membership. 

For decades, Lorena fought powerfully for thousands of trans women, all the while fighting for her own citizenship and against her own criminalization. She organized court support, gathered resources, posted bail, directed people to the support they needed to eat, live, update their immigration statuses, and so much more. The power of organizing in New York City for trans Latinx communities, sex working communities, criminalized communities is a testament to Lorena’s impact. Her life is a light, and a model for us all. Rest in power, Lorena.

I am beyond devastated to hear of Lorena Borjas’ passing. Many of my years fighting for the trans community here at the Sylvia Rivera Law Project were spent side by side with Lorena. She is truly a hero and a pioneer and someone we should all model to be like. ‘They don’t make them like that anymore.’ I will truly miss her. 💔😭🥀 🏳️‍⚧️ #RIP

~ Stefanie Rivera, Director of Client Services

Lorena Borjas was a powerful woman, movement leader, advocate, and activist for trans latinx folks, trans immigrants, trans women of color, trans folks organizing in queens; for all of us (trans folks). She was a life line to so many navigating health, safety, economic, and legal support and she was an unforgettable mother, leader, organizer, and comrade to so many tgnc folks in NYC and beyond. Many of SRLPs staff, clients, and members were blessed to know Lorena and witness or receive her commitment, generosity, vision, and wisdom. We send love to her family, friends, and community and we lift up her name and continue our fight for trans liberation in the legacy of tremendous unforgettable leaders like Lorena, Rest in Power.

~Sasha Alexander, Director of Membership

These are deeply challenging times. May we hold each other close, even as we must be physically distant. May we offer what we can and ask to receive what we need. Our members and clients are encouraged to contact staff to inform us of any needs you may have. We will do our best to respond to these needs as soon as we can.

In solidarity & care,
The SRLP Collective

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