The Safety, Legal Protections, and Social Inclusion of LGBTQ People in Central America in 2018

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This report is relevant for development and humanitarian practitioners working in Central America because it serves as a regional stock-take and as a reminder that discrimination is multi-faceted and reinforced by layers of institutions and systems.

Central America has one of the highest rates of impunity in relation to systematic violations of human rights of the LGBTQ population in the world. Extremely conservative patriarch societies in combination with hateful messages shared by churches and the media, and flailing state institutions mean that the LGBTQ community is largely unprotected by law and open to widespread violence and discrimination. This report looks at the work of various LGBTQ organisations in Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala and Nicaragua.

The report provides background on violence against LGBTQ communities across the region before looking at case studies on safety and security; collaboration between LGBTQ organisations and faith based organisations; legal protection frameworks and protection entities;, strategic alliances between LGBTQ organisations and groups; inclusion of marginalised groups specifically lesbians and trans women; and public education and communication. The report then moves into a needs and opportunities analysis with goals before concluding with recommendations aimed at states and non-state actors.

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"Emerging groups of young LGBTQ people (especially young lesbians and bisexual women) are already in processes of questioning authoritarian, patriarchal models and style of leadership."

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Central America has one of the highest rates of impunity in relation to systematic violations of human rights of the LGBTQ population in the world. Extremely conservative patriarch societies in combination with hateful messages shared by churches and the media, and flailing state institutions mean that the LGBTQ community is largely unprotected by law and open to widespread violence and discrimination. This report looks at the work of various LGBTQ organisations in Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala and Nicaragua.

The report provides background on violence against LGBTQ communities across the region before looking at case studies on safety and security; collaboration between LGBTQ organisations and faith based organisations; legal protection frameworks and protection entities;, strategic alliances between LGBTQ organisations and groups; inclusion of marginalised groups specifically lesbians and trans women; and public education and communication. The report then moves into a needs and opportunities analysis with goals before concluding with recommendations aimed at states and non-state actors.