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United in Diversity: The Impact of AfroResistance in the Fight Against Discrimination

May 17th is a significant date in the fight against discrimination and violence directed at the LGBTIQ+ community, which includes lesbians, gays, bisexuals, trans, intersex, and queer people. For over a decade, this day has been recognized as the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia. It is a time to reflect on persistent challenges and celebrate advancements in human rights protection.

We are witnessing a global moment where conservative forces have intensified their administrative and control mechanisms to promote anti-LGBTIQ+ laws, criminalizing activists and gender equity defenders. Even more critical is the lack of institutional and civil commitment to addressing violence from the intersectionality of race, gender, and sexuality, which continues to place Black and diverse people in positions of the greatest indignity.

For AfroResistance, this day holds special significance as it centers attention on the Black LGBTIQ+ community in the Americas and the African diaspora. The intersection of race, sexual orientation, or gender identity creates additional layers of discrimination and violence that must be highlighted and combated.

Challenges Facing the Black LGBTIQ+ Community

Racism, Homophobia, and Transphobia: The Black LGBTIQ+ community faces dual violence due to racism and homophobia. For trans people, this situation is even more severe as they face discrimination based on their sexual orientation, gender identity, and race, resulting in triple violence. These prejudices often manifest in social exclusion, employment and educational discrimination, and physical and psychological violence.

Invisibility: The dominant narrative within the LGBTIQ+ community often overlooks the specific experiences of Black people, resulting in invisibility and a lack of adequate representation in policies and resources.

Access to Services: Black LGBTIQ+ individuals frequently encounter additional barriers to accessing healthcare, legal support, and other essential resources, exacerbating existing inequities.

Some of Our Contributions to the Fight Against HomoLesBiTransphobia:

At AfroResistance, we are proud of our work with the Network of Women Breaking Chains in Colombia, a collective formed by Black and Afro-descendant women of all gender identities who have experienced incarceration. Our initiative in Cali has set a precedent by integrating trans women, lesbian women, and cisgender heterosexual women into educational and political advocacy spaces, where all could feel recognized and liberated. This experience has been fundamental in forging bonds between women who previously had not had the opportunity to interact with women of diverse visible sexual orientations and gender identities.

With pride and, above all, reaffirming our re-existence, we highlight the leadership of Valerie Summer, our coordinator of this program in Colombia. Valerie is a Black trans woman and head of her household, who has led this process of feminist popular education for previously incarcerated women. In her own words, she describes the experience as:

"A chance to prove to myself that other women can recognize me as a leader, mother, and teacher—something I initially feared I wouldn't experience, but now see as possible."

This testimony evidences the transformative power and capacity of Black trans women to lead and enrich our movements with their strength, re-existence, and wisdom.

AfroResistance and Its Firm Commitment:

At AfroResistance, we reaffirm our unwavering commitment to combat all forms of hate and violence against Black people, including our LGBTIQ+ sisters and siblings.

We are especially proud that the second principle of our organization is the Gender Analysis that prioritizes Black Women, Black Girls, and Trans Women. This principle underscores that recognizing the intersection of race and gender is the starting point for all our actions and analyses, acknowledging that the impact of oppression systems on Black women, girls, and trans women is profound. Our intention is clear: to aim for the liberation of all Black women and girls. This commitment is reflected in every aspect of our daily work, as well as in our constant struggle to make visible and support the most vulnerable members of our community.

Our Organizational Approach Includes:

Visibility: Highlighting the life stories and contributions of the Black LGBTIQ+ community on our platforms and programs, ensuring their voices are heard and valued.

Education and Awareness: Creating spaces and providing educational resources that delve into the intersection of race, sexual orientation, and gender identity, fostering greater understanding and solidarity among communities.

Direct Support: Working closely with local and regional organizations to provide direct and effective support to Black LGBTIQ+ individuals, ensuring they have access to the tools and resources necessary to thrive.

On this International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia, we reiterate our determination to continue fighting for a world where all people, regardless of their gender identity or sexual orientation, can live freely and without fear.


Share this post! Use the hashtags #AfroResisting #AfroResistance and tag your friends and family to join the cause.

Volunteers welcome! Join AFRORESISTANCE and collaborate on our initiatives to defend the rights of people with incarceration experiences.

Donate now! Your contributions allow us to provide legal, psychological, and social support to incarcerated women and their families.

Together we can build a better future!

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