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Honduras: recognition of an LGBTI activist

25 February 2019 News
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Last year, the IUF Latin American Executive Committee unanimously recognized the work of José Zambrano, a member of the Association for a Better Life of People Infected / Affected by HIV-AIDS in Honduras (Apuvimeh), for his commitment to the struggle for gender equality and the rights of the LGBTI community.

"This recognition surprises me and fills me with excitement and pride. It motivates me to redouble efforts in a struggle that takes place daily and without rest against stigmatization, discrimination and the lack of laws that protect the LGBTI community", said José Zambrano.

"The anguish and humiliations that we have experienced in our own flesh leave scars that mark us forever and damage our soul. I am very grateful to the IUF for this show of appreciation and solidarity.

Hopefully, it will serve as an example for trade unionism and motivate them to get closer and contribute to strengthening the fight for equality", added Zambrano.

More than 300 murders

The human rights defender recalled that, despite some progress, the year that has just ended has been one of the toughest for the LGBTI community in Honduras. "We recorded 33 murders, the vast majority of which have gone unpunished. In the last decade, more than 300 comrades have lost their lives. This is inexcusable", he said. Zambrano lamented that there were no significant advances in the historical demands for sexual diversity.

"Electoral promises to work to guarantee access to justice, health, education, employment and political participation were only idle talk. Neither could laws be adopted to combat discrimination based on sexual orientation or to promote equal rights and opportunities and the right to gender identity", he said. "The truth is that we were unsuccessful in our ability to advocate with the authorities to move forward with greater speed. This has forced us to review our strategy."

Challenges

Zambrano said that for 2019 it is necessary to improve the capacity of unified work among the different constituents of the LGBTI community.

"We must unite efforts, developing a common agenda that allows us to attack the lack of political will of the institutions and generate changes in society. We have the close example of Costa Rica, where same-sex marriage has already been approved" he recalled.
For the human rights defender, priority must be given to the work of raising awareness, not only of the authorities and institutions but also of society, to advance in the fight against violence, discrimination, stigmatization, and lack of application of justice.

Please see here the original Spanish story.