OAS holds hearings on LGBT rights in the Americas

washington blade
Michael K. Lavers
Original Article:  bit.ly/1ARqoMg

The Organization of American States’ human rights commission this week held several hearings in D.C. that focused on LGBT rights in the Americas.

Aldo Dávila of Asociación Gente Positiva in Guatemala and Irvin Umaña of Comunidad Casabierta in Costa Rica on Tuesday during an Inter-American Commission on Human Rights hearing highlighted the forced migration of LGBT people in Central America. The two men also discussed the persecution these migrants face because of their sexual orientation and gender identity and expression.

“When we leave our countries, we are not seeking the American dream,” Umaña told members of the commission. “We are not seeking professional success. We are looking to save our lives.”

Umaña and Dávila during the hearing played a recorded interview with Alex, a gay man from Honduras who fled to Costa Rica.

Alex said he left his homeland after numerous attempts on his life.

The gay Honduran said he had to beg people for money and food on the streets of the Costa Rican capital of San José in order to survive when he arrived in the country. Alex now has a job and access to housing.

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