The Lima Declaration of the LGBTTTI Coalition and the OAS’ 2010 Resolution on “Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity”

Mister Secretary General, Ministers, Members of the Official Delegations, Civil Society Representatives,

We, the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Travesti, Transsexual, Transgender and Intersex organizations, convened in Lima, Peru on June 3 and 4, 2010, in accordance with the directives established by the General Assembly of the OAS in its resolutions AG/RES.2092(XXXV-O/05); CP/RES.759(1217/99); 840(1361/03); AG/RES.1707(XXX-O/00) and AG/RES.1915(XXXIII-O/03), which determine a regulatory framework to enhance and strengthen civil society participation in activities of the Organisation of American States (OAS) and in the Summit of the Americas process, highlighting the importance of the resolution AG/RES. 2504 (XXXIX-O/09):

Express our concern that the draft Declaration of Lima does not substantively link the notions of peace and security to the promotion of human rights and non-discriminatory policies, based on sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, nor for people of African descent, the indigenous, women, youth, migrants, the elderly, persons living with disabilities or in poverty.

Policies for economic and social development must be related to wellbeing and affirmation of human rights. We are therefore alarmed about the introduction of legislation that removes protection for individuals based on sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, as well as the breach of the principle of State secularism, particularly concerning institutional policies and practices.

We emphasize that neither peace nor security are possible if everyone does not have a right to develop a plan for their life, and enjoy fundamental rights and freedoms protected by states.

This is the case of lesbian women, blackmailed by their families and forcibly confined in “rehabilitation” clinics, threatened and raped as corrective practice, denied the right to education and economic independence, deprived of custody of their children, whom are also affected by prejudice and discrimination.

Similarly, colonial laws still in force in eleven English-speaking Caribbean countries criminalizing cross-dressing, buggery, gross indecency, acts against the order of nature allow for violence, harassment, intimidation, brutality and other human rights violations by state and non-state actors. Examples include home invasions, expulsions from homes, communities, and school.

Also, transsexual, transgender, travesti and intersex persons are deprived of legal recognition of their gender identity, obliged to “normalize” their bodies, even through forced sterilization and mutilations, which may occur in early childhood. Their rights to health, housing, work, and education are thus jeopardized, as is their full enjoyment of citizenship.

Therefore, we demand:

That member states of the English-speaking Caribbean repeal all legislation criminalizing relationships between same-sex consenting adults which limit the free development of their personalities;
That all member states introduce legislation to protect, guarantee and promote equality of individuals regardless of their sexual orientation, gender identity and expression;
That all member states revise their domestic violence legislation to include violence experienced by lesbian, transgender and transsexual women within their own families;
That member states reform educational policies starting from primary school, in an effort to combat violence caused by gender stereotypes, which particularly affect transsexual, transgender, travesti and intersex individuals;
That the General Assembly approves the draft Resolution AG/doc. 5091/10 “Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity” presented by the Brazilian Delegation, whose initiative we fully endorse;
That the General Assembly approves the draft Resolution AG/doc. 5097/10 “Draft Inter-American Convention against Racism and all Forms of Discrimination and Intolerance” and that Member States finalize the negotiation of the draft accepting the progress achieved during the past years.

We call attention to the omission and inaction of states in guaranteeing our physical, psychological, sexual and reproductive integrity, our legal security and access to justice. States owe a debt to our communities: end impunity now!

Lima, Peru
June 6, 2010

AG/RES. 2600 (XL-O/10)

HUMAN RIGHTS, SEXUAL ORIENTATION, AND GENDER IDENTITY

(Adopted at the fourth plenary session, held on June 8, 2010)

THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY,

TAKING INTO ACCOUNT resolutions AG/RES. 2435 (XXXVIII-O/08) and AG/RES. 2504 (XXXIX-O/09), “Human Rights, Sexual Orientation, and Gender Identity”;

REAFFIRMING:

That the Universal Declaration of Human Rights affirms that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights and that everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in that instrument, without distinction of any kind, such as race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth, or other status; and

That the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man establishes that every human being has the right to life, liberty, and the security of the person;

CONSIDERING that the Charter of the Organization of American States proclaims that the historic mission of America is to offer to man a land of liberty and a favorable environment for the development of his personality and the realization of his just aspirations;

REAFFIRMING the principles of universality, indivisibility, and interdependence of human rights;

TAKING NOTE of the Declaration on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity, presented to the United Nations General Assembly on December 18, 2008; and

NOTING WITH CONCERN the acts of violence and related human rights violations as well as discrimination practiced against persons because of their sexual orientation and gender identity,

RESOLVES:

1. To condemn acts of violence and human rights violations committed against persons because of their sexual orientation and gender identity; and to urge states to investigate these acts and violations and to ensure that their perpetrators are brought to justice.

2. To encourage states to take all necessary measures to ensure that acts of violence and related human rights violations are not committed against persons because of their sexual orientation, gender identity, and to ensure that the victims are given access to justice on an equal footing with other persons.

3.To encourage member states to consider ways to combat discrimination against persons because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

4.To urge states to ensure adequate protection for human rights defenders who work on issues related to acts of violence, discrimination, and human rights violations committed against persons because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.

5.To request the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to continue to pay due attention to this issue and to consider the possibility of conducting a thematic study of it at the hemispheric level.

6.To instruct the Committee on Juridical and Political Affairs to include on its agenda, before the forty-first regular session of the General Assembly, the topic of “Human rights, sexual orientation, and gender identity.”

7.To request the Permanent Council to report to the General Assembly at its forty-first regular session on the implementation of this resolution. Execution of its activities shall be subject to the financial resources available in the program-budget of the Organization and other resources.

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