Latin America’s LGTB community raises its voice

The III Meeting of LGBTI Political Leaders of Latin America and the Caribbean, more than 200 LGTBI leaders, spread their motto "Democracy for Equality".

"The LGBTI community of more than 30 countries in the region of Latin America and the Caribbean concluded the international meeting that brought together more than 300 participants"

"Democracy for Equality" is the motto with which LGBT political activism in Caribbean and Latin American countries has exhausted an agenda that included workshops, panels, conferences and strategic meetings with figures from political parties in the Dominican Republic.

The program of the meeting developed events in which the realities of countries of different nations were presented, with representations such as Carmen Muñoz, Deputy Minister of Government and Police of Costa Rica; Manuel Canelas, Deputy in Bolivia; Tamara Adrián, Member of the National Assembly of Venezuela; Rosmit Mantilla, Deputy before the National Assembly of Venezuela; Alberto de Belaunde, Congressman of Peru, Martín Couto, Deputy of Uruguay; Benjamín Medrano, Deputy of Mexico; Sandra Morán, Deputy of Guatemala; Desiree Sousa de Croes, Senator of Aruba; Diane Rodríguez, National Assemblyman of Ecuador, among many more political and social actors who participated in the meeting.

Rosanna Marzan, executive director of the Dominican Diversity organization emphasized that by the year 2020 there will be openly LGTBI political candidacies in the Dominican Republic as well as in other countries as the elected figures present at the meeting.

"We have to focus on not losing the land won," said Wilson Castañeda, director of the Corporation Caribbean Affirmative of Colombia, who also warned "we will not allow setbacks, we have to participate in making a better policy for the well-being and development of our peoples ".

The central objective of the meeting focused on improving the skills and opportunities of LGBTI leaders and elected officials to participate in the democratic process as a way to achieve equality. Just five years ago, the number of openly LGBTI people in elected and government positions in Latin America and the Caribbean could be counted with the fingers. Today there are over 70 in the region and the number is growing dramatically as the LGBTI community becomes aware of the importance of this space in building more inclusive and participatory societies.

This Latin American and Caribbean convention, as in its previous two editions in Peru and Honduras, allowed participants new ideas on political participation and how to work to advance towards equality, share and learn from the experiences of others who are actively participating in their democracies, will acquire new skills that will serve to be better leaders and build networks of mutual support with other people with the same aspirations: to actively participate in their democracies to transform our communities and to achieve more just and equal societies.

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