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As a non-binary person, Jude couldn’t live safely as their authentic self in Saudi Arabia. Winning asylum in the U.S. made that possible.

Jude

My name is Jude, and I’m an asylee from Saudi Arabia. As a queer, non-binary person, growing up under sharia law was terrifying.

I cut my hair short, wore boys clothes, and dated girls—all in secret. The punishment for a woman or perceived woman dressing as a man, or same-sex relationships, includes lashings and death.

I found my way to the U.S., and I found Immigration Equality. They set me up with an amazing lawyer who worked my case for three years. In 2017, I won asylum and am now living my best life.

Winning asylum gave me a sense of hope that I’d lost a very long time ago. It felt like I finally had something to look forward to, something to work towards, a light at the end of the tunnel that I could actually reach.

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