human rights

Mexico City as a Role Model This Pride Month

June 29, 2019

Despite the strong influence of the Catholic church on cultures throughout Latin America, each day LGBTQ+ communities throughout the region continue to gain rights and the freedom to openly express their true selves.  Argentina has been a long time queer safe haven in Latin America with the availability of free hormone therapy or gender reassignment surgery to citizens of all ages since 2012, as

How the U.S. immigration 'crisis' is affecting Mexico

January 24, 2019

Under the Donald Trump presidency, recent years have seen a substantial rise in the attention and emotion invested in the United States’ immigration debate. However, continuous criticisms of the country’s immigration system from both ends of the political spectrum fail to recognize the other countries that are being affected by the same migration patterns. Although all countries in Central America have been affected in some way by the recent waves of migration, Mexico is in the center—geographically and politically—of the movement, and is arguably more the subject of a ‘crisis’ of immigration than the United States.

A Harm Reduction Experiment in Brazil

January 2, 2019

In terms of drug policy, harm reduction is broadly defined as a range of pragmatic and evidence-based policies, which primarily attempt to reduce the negative consequences associated with drug use. Harm reduction strategies target a variety of risks associated with drug use and misuse, including adverse health, social, and economic consequences. Harm reduction’s defining features include a focus on preventing harm, rather than preventing drug use, and a commitment to respecting users’ human rights.

Marielle Franco Assassination

March 28, 2018

On March 14th, 2018, one of Brazil’s strongest voices in the fight for equal rights was assassinated in her car along with her driver on the way home from an event to empower young black women in Rio de Janeiro. Marielle Franco had just been elected the city councilor of Rio de Janeiro 18 months prior to her death. At 38 years old, Franco was the only black female representative on the 51-member council, and one of seven women (The New York Times, 2018).

The Defensoria del Pueblo and Human Rights Protections in the Americas

February 14, 2017

Democracies across the Americas have seen the proliferation and expansion of democratic institutions for decades.  Along with anti-corruption offices and new courts, at least sixteen states across the Americas have adopted Human Rights Ombudsman agencies since 1985.  While they go by a variety of names (e.g.

Maurice Tomlinson: Jamaica's LGBTI Rights Activist

January 17, 2017

Upon meeting Maurice Tomlinson, one would never guess all that he has been through in his life. His smiling face lights up the room and his laughter is immediately contagious. Nothing about the LGBTI rights advocate’s demeanor reveals that he was forced out of his home country of Jamaica after threats to his life.

Why the Waiting Game in Guantánamo?

November 18, 2016

On Wednesday in response to a UN vote denouncing the embargo placed on Cuba by Congress the US abstained for the first time in 25 years.  While this is a small nod by the US in recognition of the futility of the embargo, Congress is still opposed to lifting trade constraints until Cuba does more to improve human rights (Borger 2016).

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