OutSummit Featured in the "Washington Blade"

Hundreds Attend Global LGBT Rights Conference in NYC

Read the full article at http://www.washingtonblade.com/2015/12/13/hundreds-attend-global-lgbt-ri...

LONG ISLAND CITY, N.Y. — Hundreds of LGBT rights advocates from around the world gathered in New York City on Saturday for a day-long conference that focused on global activism.

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OutRight Action International organized the conference that Council for Global Equality Chair Mark Bromley and activists from dozens of other countries attended. It capped off a series of events around International Human Rights Day that included a U.N. panel on the economic impact of anti-LGBT discrimination.

Jessica Stern, executive director of OutRight Action International, said at the beginning of the conference that advocates had met with representatives of more than 25 governments. They also sat down with officials from UNICEF and three other U.N. agencies.

“Change doesn’t happen in any one place,” said Stern as she spoke at the conference. “It happens from a combination of forces that create a forward momentum that eventually produces a catalyst for change.”

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Ging Cristobal, an OutRight Action International staffer who co-founded Lesbian Advocates Philippines, said during a conference panel that “all this talk about same-sex marriage” is “undermining gains” the LGBT rights movement in Asia has made. Gloria Careaga Pérez, a Mexican activist, added that pro-LGBT governments need to do more to support other social justice movements.

“Many governments are for LGBT people, but against women’s rights,” she said.

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Conference organizers also honored to three LGBT rights advocates — Diana Sacayán of Argentina, Joel Gustave Nana of Cameroon and Mirka Negroni of the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) — who died this year. They placed a memorial to them outside the lecture hall in which the gathering took place.