WHILE its counterparts in other parts of the globe prevaricate about including intersex people in their human rights work, the Organization of American States’ (OAS) pan-American human rights commission the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) has created “a Unit on the Rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex (LGBTI) Persons, in order to strengthen its capacity to protect their rights.”
The IAHCR is based in Washington, D.C., and its actions in being intersex-inclusive put the government of the United States of America to shame. The USA is an ongoing hold-out against full inclusion of intersex people in human rights, anti-discrimination and equality legislation, although recent concessions to intersex inclusion have been made at the Veterans’ Administration and US Passports Office.
The Commission has confirmed that LGBTI persons face serious discrimination, both in fact and in law, in the countries of the region. Among other violations, the IACHR has received information about murders, rapes, and threats to which LGBTI persons are victims. In addition, LGBTI persons face significant barriers in their access to health, employment, justice, and political participation.
The new Unit is part of the comprehensive approach the IACHR has adopted through its Strategic Plan, which promotes the harmonious development of all its work areas based on the interdependence and indivisibility of all human rights and the need to protect the rights of all individuals and groups historically subjected to discrimination.
UNITED Nations, European Parliament and your agencies and instrumentalities, President Obama, US Congress, the United Kingdom, its government, Parliament and Prime Minister, and all the other nations of the world that do not treat intersex people as full, equal citizens, please note.
Just how hard is it to recognize that intersex people exist everywhere, that we are oppressed everywhere and that we are human beings like you who do not deserve punishment just for having been born biologically different?