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On November 20, Transgender Day of Remembrance, the Permanent UN Missions of Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, El Salvador and Uruguay, joined by OutRight Action International and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, discussed the progress of human rights for LGBTIQ people in Latin America at a special event at UN Headquarters in New York.
President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda is an example of what is wrong with many countries in sub-Saharan Africa and why human rights frequently take a back seat. Museveni refuses to relinquish his hold on power.
On February 18, Ugandans will go to the polls to elect a new leader. But the chances are very high that they will end up with Museveni as president again. If successful, he will begin his fourth decade in office in the east African country.
At the main plenary panel of the 2015 conference of ILGA-Europe, OutRight Executive Director Jessica Stern joined fellow activists from around the world in addressing the benefits and challenges of cultivating alliances and other partnerships in the work of the LGBTIQ movement. The four-person panel, held on October 30 in Athens, shared its title with the overall event: “Many voices, one movement—Together, mobilised for a just society.”
The struggle for human rights for the LGBTIQ community in Zimbabwe is difficult and contentious, to say the least, given the government of Robert Mugabe’s long history of hateful and threatening rhetoric. Chester Samba, director of Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ) and a partner of OutRight’s, is among the courageous activists who has been engaged in this struggle for more than a decade.
“Today on Intersex Awareness Day, we look back nearly 20 years since two courageous individuals, Morgan Holmes and the late Max Beck, with their allies from Transexual Menace and Middlesex, stood outside a meeting of the American Academy of Pediatrics in Boston to put doctors on notice that intersex people demanded an end to dehumanizing and stereotypical treatment and care.
Contributed by Maria Mercedes Gómez - LAC Regional Program Coordinator
OutRight's Latin America and Caribbean Regional Coordinator, María Gómez, facilitated workshops focused on prejudice and violence at the 3rd annual Caribbean Women and Sexual Diversity Conference (CWSDC) held in Port of Spain, Trinidad from October 5-11.
Contributed by Suzanne Trimel - Director of Communications for OutRight
On September 28, OutRight awarded the Felipa de Souza award to GALZ, Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe, a 25-year-old organization. At OutRight’s Celebration of Courage gala in New York City, the award was presented to Chesterfield Samba, director of GALZ. Honoring LGBTIQ global activists, the award was named for Felipa de Souza, who endured persecution and brutality after declaring her intimacy with a woman during a 16th Century inquisition trial in Brazil.
Contributed by Sakshi Agarwal - Outright Intern
NewFest, the New York LGBT Film Festival, which runs October 22-27, is bigger, better, and more diverse than ever. The festival opens with the New York premiere of “Eisenstein in Guanajuato," which is a documentary about famous gay Russian director, Elmer Bäck, in 1931 Mexico. The closing event of the festival is the US premier of the Swedish drama “Girls Lost," about a trio of outcast teen females who mysteriously transform into boys overnight.
Contributed by Frank Corazza and Sakshi Agarwal - Outright Intern
On October 13, OutRight Action International attended the United Nations’ open debate on Women, Peace and Security. Yanar Mohammed, director of the Organization of Women’s Freedom in Iraq, an OutRight alumni, touched upon the harmful impact on LGBT individuals within Iraq and Syria.
Contributed by Frank Corazza and Austin Cartagena - Outright Interns
On October 12, OutRight Action International held a panel examining LGBT Rights in Iran at the CUNY Graduate Center in New York City. The panel included a professor, doctor, UN rapporteur, and lawyer who each offered their unique perspective on the state of LGBT rights in Iran. The event had a huge turnout with every seat being occupied.
Contributed by By Ging Cristobal - Asia Program Coordinator
Ging Cristobal, OutRight's project coordinator in Asia, is coordinating, facilitating and speaking at the multi-sectoral regional workshop in the Philippines about comprehensive anti-discrimination legislation today, October 9th and October 10th. The regional multi-city, multi-sectoral workshop will cover violence and discrimination faced by LGBTIQ persons in the Philippines. The workshop will address:
The Celebration of Courage Gala on September 28th marked the 25th anniversary of OutRight Action International, formerly known as the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC).
Contributed by Frank Corazza - Outright Intern
OutRight Co-Organized Core Group event at the United Nations to speak out against discrimination and violence towards LGBTIQ individuals. Speakers included UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, former Botswana President Festus Mogae, and Pakistani human rights lawyer and civil society activist Hina Jilani.
Contributed by Frank Corazza-Outright Intern
As social networking apps gain traction around the world, the risks and benefits these new technologies offer LGBTI communities worldwide vary greatly.
Contributed by MJ Moneymaker - OutRight
A few weeks ago, on a Facebook post about LGBT people in Iran, one of our followers shared a photo essay that follows the journey of LGBT refugees seeking asylum. We contacted the photographer, Bradley Secker, whose photos we have used in our report, “When Coming Out is a Death Sentence: Persecution of LGBT Iraqis.” Based in Turkey, he graciously agreed to answer a few questions about his photography project via email.