OutRight Now : Public Service Announcements from Latin America Program Team

Video still of a kiss with onlookers

Dear Supporter,

This week, ahead of Transgender Day of Remembrance on November 20, OutRight is releasing the first in a series of 8 short videos that challenge people of conscience to examine bigotry and exclusion—the twin evils we must overcome to advance human rights for everyone, everywhere.

The first two to be released are part of a series of videos in Spanish titled ?Y Tu Que Ves (“And you? What do you see?”), which turns the lens on transgender rights with an emotional appeal to reject prejudice that “sickens and kills.” The other films in the series asks viewers to examine the roots of prejudice that specifically targets gays and lesbians.

“We can do something now,” the narrator pleads. “Let’s stop being ‘them.’ When now we can be a part of ‘us.’

Even today, when we live in times more sensitive than ever to hate-based violence, anti-transgender prejudice and hatred has claimed the life of more than one person every month over the last decade. This trend shows no sign of abating.

As an OutRight supporter, I’m sure I don’t need to tell you that LGBTI people are subjected to hostile, oppressive and unconscionable laws in more than 75 countries spanning five continents that make it difficult or impossible for them to live safely and openly.

While we work to change repressive laws around the globe, videos like these commissioned by Maria Mercedes Gomez, OutRight’s Latin America program coordinator, and Shehnilla Mohamed, Africa program coordinator, help us raise awareness about the roots of bigotry and spread a counter message against hatred. Also, this week, OutRight is releasing the first of three videos that examine the political, social and economic exclusion of LGBTIQ Africans.

"We Must be Visible, Our Voices Heard" - The Political Cost of Exclusion

The “Cost of Exclusion” series features prominent African LGBTIQ activists and notable political figures: Melanie Judge of South Africa; Chesterfield Samba of Zimbabwe; Edwin Cameron, a justice of the South African Constitutional Court, the country’s highest court, and an advocate on behalf of HIV/AIDS; and Zakhele Mbhele, South Africa’s first openly gay member of Parliament.

The majority of LGBTIQ Africans are invisible in their larger cultures and many live in fear of being discovered. Invisible, that is, until some politician decides to incite violence or enact a repressive law to distract from their own failures. OutRight’s video series aims to lift the veil of invisibility and raise awareness on the consequences of exclusion.

The final Africa video on economic exclusion will be released around International Human Rights Day December 10 to coincide with the United Nations’ annual LGBTIQ rights event. The theme this year is also economic exclusion.

If you will be in New York City on December 10, we invite you to join us for the UN special event. You can register online: http://www.outsummit.org/human-rights-day/

With warm regards,


Jessica Stern,
Executive Director
OutRight Action International