Argentina: Activists Win Another Victory for the LGBT Community in Rosario, Argentina's Second-Largest Town

On December 20th, the Rosario town council adopted an anti-discrimination clause submitted by Colectivo Arco Iris. The clause, based on the one adopted by Buenos Aires a few months ago and supported by various international human rights organizations, reads: "no discrimination [on the basis of] race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age, religion, ideology, nationality, physical appearance, psychological, social, economic condition, or any other circumstance will be allowed ... The city promotes the removal of any and every type of obstacle that actually restricts equality and freedom, [or] impedes a person's full development and her/his effective participation in the social, political, or economic community life."

Rosario's activists celebrated the new clause, hoping it will help to ameliorate some of the harsh realities currently faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people (LGBT) there. According to Colectivo Arco Iris, discrimination on the job, arbitrary arrest, and youth suicide are the main problems affecting the Rosario LGBT community. In particular, the organization receives an average of 30 complaints per month regarding workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Colectivo Arco Iris is one of the main LGBT organization outside of Buenos Aires. Their current activities include: support groups for lesbians, transgender people, and people living with HIV/AIDS; massive distribution of leaflets educating the community about HIV/AIDS; work projects for people with AIDS; a hotline for reporting incidents of discrimination; and an ongoing visibility campaign in the local media, community organizations, and schools. Colectivo Arco Iris was also the host of the first National Gathering of LGBT people in Argentina and a key factor in its success.

If you want to congratulate Rosario activists for their victory, please write to:

Colectivo Arco Iris
C.C. 208 (2000), Rosario
Provincia de Santa Fe
Phone/fax: (54 - 41) 47 02 68