Bolivia, South America

Bolivia has had a total of 193 coups d'état from independence until 1981, thereby averaging a change of government once every ten months. The country has the lowest GDP per capita figures in South America (about $1350). Thus, Bolivia is one of the least developed countries in South America. Almost two-thirds of its people, many of whom are subsistence farmers, live in poverty. The government remains heavily dependent on foreign assistance.

Given the political instability and the daunting economic issues, it is difficult for rights activist to bring their issues forward. However, there are currently no laws prohibiting homosexual behavior and/or expression. There are no laws protecting GLBT people against discrimination in any form and no laws allowing GLBT people to adopt. In 2007 the government enacted a ban on same sex marriage. The constitution, implemented in February 2009, prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. See gay rights in Bolivia.



Bolivia recognises same-sex union in historic first after gay couple took their battle for recognition to the courts

Bolivia has recognised a same-sex civil union for the first time after a gay couple took their battle for recognition to the courts. David Aruquipa, 48, and Guido Montaño, 45, had their relationship recognised by Bolivia’s civil registry following a two year legal battle on Friday (11 December), Reuters reports. Same-sex marriage is not yet… Read more »

Hivos and the Bolivian Ministry of Health promote respect for diversity

In Bolivia, fear and stigmatization cause many people to ostracize and disrespect people because of their HIV-status, their (actual or perceived) sexual orientation, gender identity and expression. Members of the LGBTI community are often discriminated against, and live without expressions of affection – even from their own families. They experience unequal treatment in the workplace… Read more »

An incredible court ruling just ordered 16 countries to make same-sex marriage legal

A landmark court ruling has ordered 16 new countries to make same-sex marriage legal. The Inter-American Court of Human Rights reached a decision today on a marriage equality petition submitted two years ago by Costa Rica President Luis Guillermo Solis. 20 countries agreed to follow the court’s rulings when they signed the American Convention on… Read more »

Bolivia’s transgender citizens celebrate new ID cards

Feted by activists carrying a rainbow flag, transgender citizens in La Paz are celebrating their newfound right to register for identity cards with updated details under Bolivia’s new gender law. Transgender activist Pamela Geraldine Valenzuela was the first to do so last week during a ceremony presided over by the mayor of La Paz, Luis… Read more »

Bolivian chamber of deputies approves law to allow trans people to legally change gender

The Chamber of Deputies in Bolivia has approved a measure to allow trans people to legally change their gender and name on official documents. The Gender Identity Law, which still must be approved by the country’s Senate, means anyone over 18 can legally change their name, gender and photograph on legal documents. If approved by… Read more »

Sex workers call for the legalization of sex work in Bolivia

One of Bolivia’s sex workers organizations, Organización de Trabajadoras Nocturnas (OTN), has called for the legalization of sex work in Bolivia and for sex workers to be granted retirement benefits and health insurance. A bill on the subject will be debated in Bolivian parliament in this year. The text of the bill has been published… Read more »

Indigenous LGBT political leaders bring concerns to D.C.

On Saturday, March 16, indigenous LGBT elected officials and candidates from North and South America provided testimony at a public hearing at the Inter American Commission on Human Rights at the Organization of American States. Three leaders representing indigenous populations in Bolivia, Mexico and the United States testified at the panel “Situation of the Human… Read more »

Bolivian Senator Introduces Gay Marriage Bill

Bolivia Senator Hilda Saavedra earlier this week introduced a bill which would legalize civil marriage for gay and lesbian couples in the South American country. Saavedra, a member of the ruling Movimiento Al Socialismo (MAS) Party, said her proposal aims to aid victims of “contempt, abuse and exclusion even by the family.” She said her… Read more »

Gay Bolivia News & Reports

1 Lesbian Actresses Arrested For Naked Soap 12/02 2 Reflections of a Gay Seminarian following his visit to Bolivia 3/05 3 La Familia Galan, Bolivia’s leading troupe of drag queens–a photo essay 2005 4 Some Comments from a Native about Gay Bolivia 7/06 5 I Am Rich Potosi 11/06 (Non gay background book) 5a Gay… Read more »