Perú: Protest Elimination of LTGB Rights From the National Human Rights Plan Due to Pressures from the Catholic Church

The Peruvian government is drafting a National Human Rights Plan that originally included provisions for the LTGB communities. The Catholic Church as well as religious right wing organizations has demanded the elimination of those provisions.

Peruvian LTGB organizations and their allies are fighting to keep those provisions in the plan. International solidarity is needed.

ACTION

The Peruvian government will decide on this matter BEFORE DECEMBER 5th, 2005. Please write TODAY to the following address. A model letter, written by Peruvian organizations, can be found below. We suggest that you send your letter in Spanish (an English translation is also provided).

Doctor Jaime Reyes Miranda
Vice Ministro de Justicia (Justice Deputy Minister and also President of the National Council for Human Rights)
Presidente del Consejo Nacional de Derechos Humanos (CNDH)
jfreyesm@minjus.gob.pe
Fax: (511) 4404310
Doctor José Burneo
Secretario Ejecutivo del Consejo Nacional de Derechos Humanos (Secretariat – National Council for Human Rights)
jburneo@minjus.gob.pe
Fax: (511) 4410547

And please send a copy to the Campaign for an Interamerican Sexual and Reproductive Rights Convention that will collect all the letters:

convencion@cladem.org

SAMPLE LETTER

DOCTOR JAIME REYES MIRANDA
Vice-Ministro de Justicia
Presidente del Consejo Nacional de Derechos Humanos
Presente.-

De nuestra consideración:

Hemos recibido con mucha preocupación la información que el Consejo Nacional de Derechos Humanos (CNDH) aprobó la versión final del Plan Nacional de Derechos Humanos, reduciendo a su mínima expresión las demandas planteadas por los y las activistas y comunidades LTGB, quienes participaron a lo largo del proceso consultivo convocado por el propio Consejo.

Como parte del movimiento internacional para la promoción y defensa de los derechos humanos, queremos expresar nuestra extrañeza y preocupación por esta situación, más aún cuando hemos tomado conocimiento, que ésta es el resultado de las posiciones expresadas por los representantes de la Conferencia Episcopal Peruana ante el CNDH.

Queremos expresar que de aceptarse la propuesta de la Conferencia Episcopal recogida por el plan, se estaría:

  1. Contraviniendo el orden constitucional del país que explícitamente reconoce la orientación sexual de las personas como derecho humano, tanto a través del Código Procesal Constitucional como en los diferentes fallos que el Tribunal Constitucional ha emitido sobre la materia.
  2. Contraviniendo las obligaciones del Perú adquiridas a través de diversos convenios y tratados internacionales de carácter vinculante, como la Carta Andina para la Promoción y Protección de los Derechos Humanos, y el reciente compromiso ante la Alta Comisionada de las Naciones Unidas para los derechos humanos, de avanzar en la formulación de un Plan Nacional que incorpore la protección de los derechos de las personas con diferente orientación sexual, entre otras.
  3. Violentando el resultado de un proceso democrático, público y transparente de consulta ciudadana promovido por el propio Consejo Nacional de Derechos Humanos a través de 18 Audiencias Públicas realizadas a nivel nacional.
  4. Desconociendo que las condiciones de vulnerabilidad a causa de la orientación sexual de las personas se acrecienta cuando a ésta se suman otras marcas de exclusión como son la pobreza, condición étnica y racial, género, generación, entre otras.
  5. Verificando la injerencia de la jerarquía de la iglesia católica en la adopción de políticas públicas, la misma que pondría en cuestión el carácter laico del Estado Peruano.

Consideramos que reducir a su mínima expresión las obligaciones que el Estado se propone en el Objetivo Estratégico No. 6 del Plan Nacional de Derechos Humanos, no sólo resulta irresponsable sino que encubre las graves situaciones de violencia y discriminación que cotidianamente experimentan cientos de miles de peruanos y peruanas a causa de su orientación sexual.

Solicitamos se respeten los consensos expresados a lo largo del proceso de consulta pública y que este plan refleje de manera cabal y adecuada las obligaciones suscritas por el Estado Peruano en materia de derechos humanos para todas las personas.

Muy atentamente,

(Name, organization, address)


English version

We are very concerned about the news that the National Council for Human Rights (CNDH) has already approved a final version of the National Human Rights Plan in which the concerns of LTGB activists and communities –who actively took part in the consultation process called by the Council- have been reduced to their minimal expression.

As part of the international movement to promote and defend human rights, we want to express our astonishment and concern on the face of this situation, compounded by the fact that we have learned it was a result of pressure exerted by the Peruvian Bishops Conference on CNDH.

We consider that allowing the Plan to be modified by the Bishops Conference’s pressures would imply:

  1. Contravening the country’s institutional rule that explicitly has recognized sexual orientation as a human right, through its Constitutional Procedural Code as well as in several Constitutional Court verdicts on the matter.
  2. Contravening the obligations that Peru has acquired by ratifying different international covenants and treaties, like the Andean Chart for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights, as well as the commitment it took recently before the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to move forward in implementing a National Human Rights Plan that takes into account the protection of those who differ from the mainstream in their sexual orientation as well as other groups.
  3. Violating the result of a democratic, public and transparent process in which citizens were invited to participate by the National Council on Human Rights through 18 Public Consultation Hearings held throughout the country.
  4. Ignoring that the situation of vulnerability in which individuals are placed due to their sexual orientation is compounded when they also belong to other communities that face exclusion due to their poverty, ethnic and racial identity, gender, age, among other conditions.
  5. Confirming the Catholic Church’s hierarchy interference in public policies, and so questioning the very nature of the Peruvian State as secular.

We consider that reducing State obligations in regard to LTGB communities –as listed in Strategic Objective 6 of the National Human Rights Plan- to its minimal expression is not only an irresponsible act but also a way to cover up the serious incidents of violence and discrimination that are faced every day but hundreds of thousands Peruvians due to their sexual orientation.

We request that consensus reached during the public consultation process be upheld and that the Plan reflects accurately and wholly, those obligations entered into by the Peruvian state in terms of affirming human rights for all.

Yours truly,

(Name, organization, address)