Latin America

Global trans perspectives on health and wellbeing: TvT community report

Today, the Transrespect versus Transphobia Worldwide (TvT) project team  is launching our publication, “Global trans perspectives on health and wellbeing: TvT community report.”

Transgender HIV and sexually transmissible infections

Transgender women across a range of different populations and settings have a high prevalence of HIV infection.

International Activists Fight Anti-LGBTQ Crackdowns

While levels of homophobic and transphobic violence and discrimination rose to new heights during 2016 and the first half of 2017—with anti-gay atrocities committed in Chechnya sending shockwaves around the world—a handful of countries also made unprecedented moves to recognize same-sex relations or enact stronger LGBT protections.

UNAIDS Caribbean: All human beings are born free and equal

Excerpt of statement by Dr. César Núñez, UNAIDS Latin America and Caribbean Regional Support Team Director:
[IDAHOT] comes at a critical time for Latin America and the Caribbean. This year the world started its 15-year journey toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals with their emphasis on dignity, equality and security for all. Yet recent events in the region demonstrate that entire communities remain degraded, discriminated against and excluded.

[...]Here’s an idea of the fallout. According to UNESCO almost half of LGBT students in Latin America do not finish secondary school. Global AIDS Response Progress Report data show that in some countries HIV rates among men who have sex with men and transgender women are as much as twenty times the national average.  Globally, there were more than 1300 reported killings of transgender people between 2008 and 2013. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights notes that four of every five such murders occurred in this region.

Discrimination increases the vulnerability of entire communities by driving them away from life-saving services like health. Our words, actions and attitudes really do hurt. We have learned over the last three decades that HIV is not just about sex. Social exclusion, gender-based violence, poverty, unemployment and unmet health needs are among the contributing factors. Read his full statement via UNAIDS Caribbean

US: LGBT Envoy wants to get by with a little help from our friends

Newly appointed U.S. LGBT rights envoy Randy Berry doesn’t see his primary job as weighing in in countries where LGBT rights are most embattled. Instead, he’s targeting “the vast set of countries in the middle” on the question of embracing LGBT rights as a human rights concern.

Berry is beginning a 15-country swing through Latin America and Europe set to coincide with LGBT Pride Month. Though Berry is working on plans to head to Uganda in July, he is first visiting countries that have made rapid progress on LGBT rights over the past few years to get ideas on what strategies have been most effective.

“A great deal of leadership is coming out of several places in Latin America,” Berry said, adding that he hoped the trip would generate ideas on how to diffuse the attack often made by LGBT rights opponents that the U.S. is forcing acceptance of homosexuality on the rest of the world. Berry is kicking off his tenure by emphasizing his role as an international emissary, but he has also been charged by Secretary of State John Kerry with coordinating the U.S.’s response to anti-LGBT crackdowns when they occur. Read More 

Latin America: Study finds many against gay marriage

A study called "Religion in Latin America" etermined that most of the religious population does not approve of same-sex marriage. The work was conducted by the polling Pew Research. The research aims clarify the positions of Latin American religiosity and Hispanics in the United States.

The survey captured the differences in perception between Catholic and Protestants on the continent as well as the breakdown by country.

Hispanics are less conservative than Latin Americans in terms of attitude and sexual and social behavior, with 46% support for equal marriage and only 34% opposed. Read More 

US: Members of congress object to free-trade deal with countries criminalizing LGBT people

Five out LGBT members of Congress objected to the inclusion of two countries with anti-LGBT laws that include punishment of death by stoning, in a free trade deal that the Obama administration is currently seeking to fast-track it for adoption.

A letter sent to the president, the members asked why Malaysia and Brunei are part of a trade deal called the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), which also includes several other nations in Asia and Latin America.

Labor unions and other advocacy groups have long voiced concern that TPP could set too low a bar for signatories, but the pact became a serious concern for LGBT-rights groups last spring after the sultan of Brunei imposed a version of sharia law with death penalty for homosexuality along with other sexual offenses. Read More