Gay Brazil News & Reports 2004-07

1 Gays in Brazilian State Quietly Tie Knot 5/04

2 In Brazil: Prejudice Out at school 6/04

3 Hundreds of thousands turn out for gay pride parades 6/04

4 Brazil’s homosexuals slam ‘insulting’ bill 7/04

5 Brazil: Organizing for Gay Rights in Salvador da Bahia city Nov/Dec 2004

6 Gay Rio de Janeiro: The New “South Beach” for New Years Dec/Jan 2004-05

7 Young Prosecutor Roils Brazil with Gay Marriage Case 2/05

8 Two Million Celebrate Gay Pride In Sao Paulo 5/05

9 Rio’s gay Jews 8/05

10 Millions celebrate Sao Paulo, Brazil Gay Pride 6/06

11 Lista revela os 10 gays mais poderosos do Brasil; leia destaques GLS 11/06

12 Brazil’s Sexiest Beaches 12/06

13 Brazil’s considers outlawing homophobia 3/07

14 Sao Paulo Gay Pride attracts thousands 6/07

15 Brazilian football’s gay rumours land judge in trouble 8/07

16 First Hurdle for LGBT Rights Passed Within Latin American Economic Union 8/07

17 Gay Rights Gain Ground Around Globe, even in the land of machismo 9/07

18 Brazil’s President Lula convenes unprecedented Conference for LGBT 11/07

18a Brazil to Dispense Condoms in Schools 12/07

19 Brazilian president calls national LGBT conference 12/07

20 Brazil presents two new gay magazines 12/07

Associated Press

May 28, 2004

Gays in Brazilian State Quietly Tie Knot

by Alan Clendenning, Associated Press Writer
Porto Alegre, Brazil – To the cheers of a delighted crowd, Joazinho Moraes and Alcindo Sandini exchanged gold rings and cut their white wedding cake inside their beauty salon across the street from the city’s Roman Catholic cathedral. A day earlier, the two men sealed their commitment by signing papers before a justice of the peace, becoming the latest gay couple to get hitched in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil’s first state to permit civil unions between same-sex couples.

Now it was time to party with champagne and hors d’oeuvres, a celebration that symbolizes one of the biggest gains for gay rights in Latin America. Unlike the controversy raging in the United States over gay marriages, a landmark judicial decision two months ago allowing civil unions in Brazil’s southernmost state has generated little tension in Porto Alegre. It’s such a non-issue in South America’s largest country that many people don’t even know about it.

In the United States, homosexuals from San Francisco to New York state raced to get married for fear that newly permitted gay marriages could soon be made illegal. But even opponents of civil unions in Rio Grande do Sul doubt the decision will be overturned. Only a few dozen gay couples have tied the knot so far in the state capital of Porto Alegre, a city of 1.4 million in a state best known for cowboys, prime cuts of beef and hearty red wine. For others, there’s no reason to rush. Moraes and Sandini chose a civil union in March, but waited because they needed time to plan their party and send out invitations. The most nerve-racking moment for Moraes came just before the couple legalized their relationship.

"I was scared to death he’d back out at the last minute," Moraes said with relief after getting the civil union certificate and preparing to share a bottle of champagne with Sandini. "But he did it and now we can be happy." The order allowing civil unions gives same-sex couples in Rio Grande do Sul broad rights in areas such as inheritance and child custody, and legal grounds to seek insurance benefits and pensions. Legislation approved last year in Buenos Aires, Argentina, was hailed as the first big victory for gay rights in Latin America. But unlike the Brazilian decree, the Argentine measure does not grant gay couples legal status for their unions, allow them to adopt children or receive inheritances.

The Rio Grande do Sul decision came after a lesbian college professor heading on a sabbatical abroad tried to get her university to pay for her partner’s costs, but was refused because they were not married. Following a request by the state’s human rights commission, a panel of judges issued an opinion defending gays’ right to seek the same legal protections afforded to traditional married couples. Under Brazilian law, it cannot be overturned in federal courts. "The only way to change it would be with a constitutional amendment to say ‘All Brazilians are equal except gays’ and that will never happen," said Luis Gustavo Weiler, a leader of Nuances, a Porto Alegre gay group. The order generated modest interest in Porto Alegre’s newspapers, with local religious leaders condemning civil unions as condoning "sin" and "heresy." But it barely made ripples elsewhere in Brazil, and didn’t lead to calls by national politicians to halt civil unions.

Although Brazilians often deride homosexuals in crude jokes, gays are generally tolerated. Their flamboyant drag parades have long been major draws during Carnival celebrations in Rio de Janeiro and in the northeastern city of Salvador. Brazil is the world’s largest predominantly Roman Catholic country, but most Brazilians don’t think civil unions affect them, so they don’t complain, said Father Ricardo Paz, a Porto Alegre priest and ecclesiastical judge. "It’s a pragmatic attitude which says, ‘As long as I don’t suffer the consequences, fine’ without realizing that this could destroy the concept of family, and confuse our children, especially teens, who will see this as an option," he said.

Moraes and Sandini have lived together for eight years. They said their life won’t change much now that they’re joined by a civil union. They just hope their certificate to convince the bank where Sandini works that Moraes should be added to his partner’s health insurance plan. Dressed in black suits, the two greeted guests with kisses on the cheeks as they arrived for the reception in the salon, festooned with green and yellow drapes, the colors of Brazil’s flag. Moraes took off one of his shoes for his secretary to carry around the room on a silver platter so people could stuff money inside, a Rio Grande do Sul wedding tradition normally reserved for the bride.

Crying and laughing, 60-year-old Sueli Vargas hugged Moraes and Sandini. After living through Brazil’s 1964-1985 dictatorship, Vargas said legalizing civil unions is a small change in a country still getting used to democratically elected leaders, freedom of speech and an uncensored press. "Before, everyone thought that relationships were just for man and woman, but that’s changing," she said. "There’s been so many big changes since the dictatorship that this just seems natural."

The Advocate Magazine,

June 8, 2004

In Brazil: Prejudice Out at school

Recognizing that prejudice often starts at a young age, the Brazilian government has decide to address anti-gay discrimination by taking the issue to the classroom. “Brazil Against Homophobia”, launching May 25, 2004, will focus on training public school teachers in how to discuss homosexuality with students.

“Prejudice and discrimination breed much of the violence practiced against homosexuals.” National human rights secretary Nilmario Miranda told agencia Brasil. “To stem this violence, teachers must be able to transmit values of tolerance and respect.” The program also includes special trainings for the country’s police forces, which are often accused of violence against gays. “It is perhaps the most important step ever taken” to guarantee Brazilian gay rights, said Toni Reis, secretary-general of the Brazilian association of Gays, Lesbians, Bisexuals and Transsexuals.

Associated Press

June 14, 2004

Hundreds of thousands turn out for gay pride parade

Sao Paulo, Brazil – Go-go boys and drag queens waved rainbow-colored flags as hundreds of thousands of dancing revelers clogged a downtown avenue to celebrate gay pride on Sunday. Organizers said they expected 1.5 million people to attend the Eighth Annual Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans-gender Pride Parade, which would make it the world’s biggest gay event. Police said they would provide a crowd estimate later Sunday. Sao Paulo is South America’s largest city and the center of gay activism and visibility in Brazil, with about 85 bars, restaurants and clubs catering to the gay clientele.

"This event helps a lot. People need to get used to us (gays)," said Edilson Gomes, a 24-year-old law student who came to the parade with his partner. "This helps to promote gay marriage, we – as a couple – would need it." Civil unions between same-sex couples are permitted only in Brazil’s southernmost state, Rio Grande do Sul. While the practice has not spread to other states, the unions have stirred surprisingly little controversy in this predominantly Roman Catholic country. A bill that would allow civil unions throughout the country has been held up in Congress for years by a group of Evangelical Protestant lawmakers. Still, homosexuality is widely tolerated in Brazil. The parade had an ample share of heterosexual supporters, such as Rosangela Rocha, a 50-year-old housewife, who came with two female friends.

"We are here to honor the gay community. We didn’t succeed in getting our husbands to come along, though, they’re very macho," said Rocha, who wore a heavy jacket but looked on approvingly at the young men parading shirtless in the 50-degree Fahrenheit (10-degree Celsius) weather. Sao Paulo Mayor Marta Suplicy gave a speech to open the parade, as she did last year, proclaiming her pride in the city’s diversity. The parade, which began in 1997, attracted about 1 million people last year. At Sunday’s parade, 24 sound trucks blasted techno-pop and disco, to the delight of the crowd. Revelers unfurled a 50-meter-long (55-yard) rainbow flag, and health ministry workers distributed 50,000 free condoms. Gay pride also is being celebrated in 22 other Brazilian cities in June and July, including Rio de Janeiro next Sunday.

SAPA (South Africa),

14 July 2004

Brazil’s homosexuals slam ‘insulting’ bill
(to subsidise homosexuals for going straight)

Rio De Janeiro – Gay Brazilians prepared to battle a bill in state legislature to subsidise homosexuals for going straight, activist Claudio Nascimento said. "The bill to give aid to homosexuals who want to become heterosexual is a political insult, which jeopardises the prestige of the Legislative Assembly," the leader of the Rainbow Group said. "We expect it to fail." The bill was drafted by Christian Democrat deputy Edino Fonseca to create an "aid programme for persons who voluntarily opt to change their sexual orientation".

Already, the constitution and the justice committees have approved it. Both are chaired by evangelicals. Fonseca said: "We do not think homosexuality is a disease, but an acquired habit that can be broken. Fonseca has an 18th century outlook," Nascimento said. The chair of the justice and constitution committees, Domingos Brazao, said the bill "does not trample constitutional or judicial norms". The chair of the health committee, Samuel Malafaia, called homosexuality "a distortion of nature". Gay activists expect the bill to fail in the committees on discrimination and on human rights.
– Sapa-AFP

Gay and Lesbian Review Worldwide (bi-monthly magazine)

November-December 2004

International Spectrum:
Brazil: Organizing for Gay Rights in Salvador da Bahia city

by John Keene
Salvador da Bahia is perhaps best known to tourists as the most" African" city in Brazil. The administrative center of Bahia State, the third-largest city in Brazil and the country’s first capital (until 1764), Salvador displays the profound and abiding influence of the African slaves who were brought to its shores for over 300 years.
Travelers from across the world and Brazil flock to Salvador to hear musicians like Caetano Veloso, Olodum, and He Aiye, to learn its martial arts tradition of capoeira, to witness the Yoruba-derived rites of Candomble, and to participate in one of Brazil’s three major Carnival celebrations.

But Salvador also is home to one of the nation’s most dynamic and the oldest GLBT and human rights groups, Grupo Gay da Bahia (GGB). Established in 1980 by activist and scholar Dr. Luiz R. B. Mott, GGB has been a pioneer advancing human rights and passing anti-discrimination laws, both inside and outside Bahia. It has also been active in battling HIV/AIDS transmission in Brazil and promoting public acceptance of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. One area in which GGB has been especially vigilant is anti-gay violence, an ongoing problem in Brazil, especially in the socially conservative northeast region. (For more informatIon about GGB, visit their Website at They offer basic information in English.)

Last year (July 2003) I had an informal online discussion with Marcelo Cerqueira, the president of GGB. We spoke about his personal activism; GGB’s role in Salvador and its efforts to advance gay rights and human rights; the role of black culture among Bahia’s homosexuals; and the relationship between Brazilian and American gay culture. Since then, Marcelo has continued his and GGB’s multifaceted efforts to enhance and advance the rights of GLBT people.

John Keene: Hi, Marcelo. Why don’t you start by telling me something about yourself.

Marcelo Cerqueira: I’m 34 years old. I was born in Salvador and teach history. After I entered college, I began to get involved with student activism and dedicated myself to GGB. For more than ten years, I’ve been an activist in the movement for the defense of homosexual and human rights in Brazil. I also am the communications secretary for the Brazilian Association of Gays, Lesbians and Transsexuals.

JK: What do you do at Grupo Gay da Bahia (GGB)?

MC: I’m currently dedicating all my time to the homosexual movement in Brazil, and at the same time, I’m writing for websites and newspapers.

JK: Not long ago, in early 2003, you ran for public office. What led to your candidacy, and what were your priorities for the GLBT community and for Bahia?

MC: I was a candidate to be a state deputy for the Green Party of Brazil, and our campaign goal was to guarantee representation for homosexuals in the country’s decision-making centers. GGB has always been an enthusiastic proponent of including homosexuals in politics. That’s because we’re certain that homophobia in the various decision-making centers has been greatly enhanced by a rise in organized action by evangelical groups. I wasn’t elected, but I got 5,445 votes from those who shared my consciousness and desired a change. [Marcelo is again a candidate this year for a state office on the Green Party ticket and has been involved in an effort, "Desire and Power" ("Desejo e Poder"), to elect gay candidates in the major cities of northeastern Brazil. ]

JK: Returning to GGB, how does the organization serve the local gay communities?

MC: GGB offers space for the promotion of health, of rights and homosexual citizenship. We offer health services, as well as specific items like condoms and lubricants, and we serve as an advocate for those who experience prejudice and need rapid action. But our work is especially aimed at forming a favorable opinion in [Brazilian] society on homosexual questions. GGB offers the opportunity for dialogue, but above all we assume leadership in a society that does not know how to live with differences.

JK: How does GGB relate to the other Brazilian GLBT and human rights groups? MC: GGB has the distinction of being the oldest functioning group of its kind in Brazil. It has existed for more than 22 years, and we are a national clearinghouse in all kinds of areas, such as the promotion of rights, health, and homosexual citizenship.

JK: Are there GLBT groups in the other large Bahian cities? Are there any in the smaller towns in the interior?

MC: In addition to a community mobilization project and the creation of new leaders, we belong to Project Somos ("We Are"), a national and international organization that combats the spread of HIV/AIDS. In the various Bahian municipalities we are establishing gay groups and our goal is to launch these kinds of organizations in all the cities of Bahia.

JK: What other cultural activities are you participating in?

MC: The major event that we’ve achieved is the Bahian gay pride parade. It’s a really exciting event for GGB and for the city of Sal
vador. [Bahia’s third annual gay pride parade and celebration, which took place in June 2004, drew its largest crowd ever at over 80,000 attendees.]

JK: How do you see GLBT life in Bahia today?

MC: Here in Bahia it’s very diverse. Young people here are sexually active very early, and that’s good because it facilitates the process of coming out as gay. Also, many men here are bisexuals, so it’s very difficult to be gay and have a fixed relationship, because many men are available for quick affairs and don’t want any commitment.

JK: On GGB’s website, I saw. that the gay pride parade in Salvador has a strong Afro-Brazilian cultural aspect. The parade even begins with a procession of Bahian women in traditional dress. How did that come to pass? What is the importance of Afro-Brazilian heritage for gay Bahians?

MC: Salvador is the major black city outside of Africa. As a result, there’s no need to state that black culture here is very strong. Candomble is the religion of black Brazilians and it’s also a very important religion for gays, who participate in great numbers, being priests, initiating others; it’s marvelous. Sex is not a problem. It’s a solution, because it’s part of the communion with the supernatural. In no way is [GLBT life] different for Afro-Bahians. The beachheads of music and black culture are very vibrant and everyone lives and experiences these aspects of our culture differently from sexual orientation.

JK: In your view, how do Afro-Brazilian cultural and political groups relate to Afro-Brazilian gays?

MC: With regard to cultural groups and institutionalized black groups, they do have some difficulty in inserting the discourse of the gay movement into their political practice. It doesn’t occur on a daily basis because many blacks and mixed people relate themselves sexually with other men, be it for money or pleasure, without thinking about the gay aspect. Take soldiers, for example; and I’ve even had diverse lovers, including some who are policemen. They don’t assume that they are having affairs with a gay person. But military guys take part in fetish play and gay men give them what they want, they’re even looking for this kind of hookup in the majority of cases.

JK: One of the major issues black homosexuals (and African-American people in general) in the USA face is a rise in HIV/AIDS transmission levels. What is the principal issue for Afro-Brazilians? In Brazil and Bahia is AIDS a problem?

MC: In Bahia there are around 5,800 people identified as living with AIDS. The profile of the PWA here is male, the majority are men. We don’t have a breakdown by color or race. Condoms now have been absorbed into the practice of prevention. But among some people the myth exists that black men’s penises are stronger, thicker, and larger than whites’. Because of this, they think that black men don’t get infected by HIV. The majority of Bahians don’t believe this, but the myth exists. GGB has already distributed more two million condoms.

JK: Reading Brazilian websites and books by Brazilian authors, I see that so many aspects of Buro-American culture already are in Brazil: the "bear" phenomenon, circuit parties, and now barebacking (sex without protection). What do you think about these issues? Are ,they the result of globalization or a new form of psychic colonization?

MC: I think that the Brazilian gay movement closely linked to the movement in the USA and Brazilian gays are really turned on by our Gerican brothers from the north. Sometimes everything is in English: parties (jestas) here are called "party," leaflets and fliers are called "fly"; even the model of the "body beautiful," the "barbie" [Brazilian muscle man], is an import. Gay men go to the USA and return crazed, including bringing back novelties like barebacking. It is the effect of gay globalization, of the pride parades, but outside the language issues and sex without protection, I don’t see much that’s bad in all of this.

JK: Some Americans believe that Brazil is a country of greater openness and tolerance than the USA in terms of sexuality. But on the GGB site, you’ve documented many incidents of anti-GLBT violence, from attacks to murders. What is the reality in Brazil and in Bahia? What is the relation between class, homophobia, economics, inequality, and religion?

MC: Brazil is a country that’s learning pretty quickly to live with gays. Of course, inherent prejudices exist in poor countries. It’s true that homosexuals are killed here. More are killed than in Mexico, more than in the USA, and it’s a point of shame for us. Many gays are assassinated every year, the fruit of prejudice. It’s very contradictory, because Brazilian men like to have sex with gays. Perhaps it’s that they have a problem in acknowledging this posture; sometimes after the sex depression sets in. That happens in all places in the world. It is a question that requires ample reflection, an analysis of all the possibilities, including the question of poverty.

JK: What are some other current objectives of GGB? What are your goals now?

MC: The objectives of GGB consist of expanding the level of information in the general population about homosexuality and creating a culture of respect for differences. Our current goals are guaranteeing social space so that homosexual people can express themselves freely, equally placing the discussion about homosexuality on the political agenda and of human rights in Brazil.

John Keene is an author and teaches at Northwestern University.

Source : Archives

December 2004/05

Gay Rio de Janeiro: The New “South Beach” for New Years

Each year, more and more gay men seeking a sexy, exciting New Years vacation are trading in their “Cosmos” for “Caipirinhas,” and heading to Rio de Janeiro, leaving the usual winter get-aways like South Beach behind. This year, Zoom Vacations can bring you to the heart of the action. “Rio today reminds me of what South Beach was like 10 years ago,” said Joel Cabrera, the owner of Zoom Vacations, a gay vacation company based in the US, “The beaches are loaded with eye candy as far as the eye can see, and the night scene explodes with some of the best venues and music in the world.”

The center of Rio’s gay scene is Ipanema, with its huge gay beach, trendy restaurants, and unique gay bars. “ Everyone wants to stay in Ipanema,” said Cabrera, “It’s unlike any place I’ve ever been, and you do things you probably would never do back home, like walk around town, go shopping, and go for lunch wearing nothing but a Speedo and flip-flops. But, everyone does it, and it’s totally normal…and sexy to boot.” A typical day in Rio starts with a huge Brazilian breakfast buffet at your hotel with fresh exotic fruits and juices, freshly baked breads, and incredible meats and cheeses. After breakfast, Zoom Vacations suggests you try your hand at tandem hang-gliding, which takes you over Rio’s beautiful beaches and tropical jungle.

Or, they can take you on a professionally guided tour of one of the favelas, the small settlements of jerry-built shacks that cover the hills around Rio. Favelas form much of Rio’s culture and are credited with creating the Samba, and a visit will provide an unparalleled understanding of Rio’s culture. On other days you may do a little morning shopping or perhaps take a trip to Corcovado, where the famous Christ Statue, Christo Redento stands watching over the city.

Whatever you decide, at some point everyone flocks to the beach to mingle, reconnect with people met at a club the night before, and drink caipirinhas (a Brazilian drink made from fresh lime juice, tons of sugar, and a strong liquor called cachaca). After a few hours basking in the sun, it’s time for a late lunch at a Brazilian Bar B Q, called a churrascaria, or perhaps an outside café where you can enjoy a sandwich and a chopp (a draft beer). One thing for sure, you won’t leave Rio without taking in a lot of meat, pun intended.

Your Rio vacation reaches its climax on December 31st, where you will see everything you’ve been missing all these years spending New Years back in the States. On New Years Eve in Rio, everyone from t he tourists to cariocas (the name given to the locals of Rio de Janeiro) dress in white, and walk into the water to cleanse their past year’s sins by giving an offering to the sea goddess, Yemanja. Millions of people flock to Copacabana Beach to hear live music and watch the world-famous fireworks display. It is truly a destination of beauty and contrast. Everyone is sun-kissed from a week of beach parties, hang-gliding, and touring this sensual city, and dressed all in white, the contrast makes even the once-pale tourists look beautifully exotic.

However, the most unique dichotomy is the week of partying contrasted with the spiritual “cleansing” of New Years Eve in Rio. Zoom Vacations’ New Years package in Rio provides an insider’s edge to everything the city has to offer, including accommodations at the highly sought-after Ipanema Plaza Hotel, private beach parties, a phenomenal helicopter tour of the city, free cell phones for the week, and more. They even can hook you up with optional activities such as hang-gliding, and unforgettable tours of the Tijuca Forest, favelas, and even the world-famous samba schools.

Rio de Janeiro in English is River of January, and Zoom Vacations will show you that there is no better time to be there! John Sarley of LA who joined Zoom Vacations last New Years said, “Exploring Rio with the Zoom boys doubles the fun and cuts the hassles in half. Four thumbs up!" Steve Morris of Chicago said, " Rio is a magical place to be for New Years….the sun is blazing, the energy in the streets is electric, and the personalized service of the Zoom staff is second to none….I look forward to coming back for years to come!"

Jay Deratany also of Chicago said, "Rio and Zoom Vacations are both hot, hot, hot! We so enjoyed the excursions, the beaches, the wonderful meals and mostly the gracious hospitality of the Zoom group. Without a doubt, I can say that you haven’t been on a vacation until you have been on a Zoom Vacation!" Franco Castiglione of NYC says the best things about Rio for New Years are "Fabulous beaches and hot spots, gorgeous guys, and it’s so cheap!"

For more information, please go to, or call 1 866 966-6822.


February 27, 2005

Young Prosecutor Roils Brazil with Gay Marriage Case

by Terry Wade
Taubate, Brazil – Assigned by the Brazilian government to a backwater factory town, 27-year-old prosecutor Joao Gilberto Goncalves has turned the obscure post into anything but, using it to mount the country’s first serious effort to legalize gay marriage.

While the high-profile January court filing seeking to legalize gay marriage has outraged the Catholic church in the world’s biggest Catholic country, Goncalves, the father of two small children and a baptized Catholic himself, says the case is straightforward. " Gays deserve equal rights, not more rights or less rights. This is something that should be discussed objectively, without interference by the church’s moral standard of marriage," he said in an interview in Taubate, a sleepy town of farming and industry about 80 miles northeast of Sao Paulo.

Since joining Brazil’s elite class of federal prosecutors two years ago — he has no boss and can’t be fired — Goncalves has quickly made a name for himself. He won a case requiring the government to release some secret files from the country’s 1964-1985 dictatorship and plans to file a case that would legalize stem-cell research. Stout and bespectacled with a scholarly demeanor, Goncalves works from a converted house in a quiet residential area. He grew interested in gay rights after reading an article by an academic that showed, according to 1997 data, one gay is beaten to death every three days in Brazil.

" Despite appearances of being tolerant, Brazil is a place where gays are violently killed," he said. His interest in testing the limits of Brazil’s 1988 constitution and a belief that legalizing gay marriage would fight social prejudice convinced him to file the case.
" I’m 100 percent heterosexual," Goncalves said. "I’d never been involved in the gay rights movement before this." His administrative filing asks the federal judiciary to broadly interpret a constitutional rule so as to extend marriage rights to all couples, including same-sex ones.

A court decision is expected late this year, but the case will likely be reviewed by higher courts. If upheld, it would allow gays in the world’s fifth most populous country to wed.

Condemnation And Support
Leaders of Brazil’s Catholic church have denounced the 97-page filing. But the president’s human rights officer and advocates for Brazil’s gay population — estimated at 18 million people — have praised Goncalves. Brazil’s constitution outlaws discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Straight couples currently have an unfair advantage because they are allowed to marry, gaining rights to the inheritance and pensions left behind by their spouses, Goncalves said. Goncalves, who was baptized Catholic but disregards many church teachings, said the church has been wrong before. " A long time ago it was considered inappropriate to talk about equal rights for women and blacks. The church used to teach that blacks didn’t have souls. We now know that’s an entirely absurd idea," he said.

He thinks gays will gain social rights the way women did several decades ago. " I think in the future we will look back and be shocked by how poorly we treated homosexuals," he told Reuters. Brazilian society may be moving in Goncalves’ direction. Last year, the southern state of Rio Grande do Sul approved gay civil unions. It gives gay couples some rights stemming from marriage, like access to their partner’s social security, but not rights to pension benefits and inheritance. Unlike in the United States, where gay marriages in San Francisco and New York caused front-page headlines in newspapers, civil union ceremonies in Brazil haven’t raised a fuss.

Most people don’t even know they are happening, and gay couples from other states haven’t been traveling to Rio Grande do Sul to enter civil unions. Homosexuality is met with acceptance in Brazil’s big cities, where there is a thriving gay night life, but often stigmatized in rural areas. Government health ads frankly discuss sexuality yet few celebrities or politicians are openly gay. Outside of Brazil, Canada has presented a bill to legalize gay marriage and could become the third country after Belgium and the Netherlands to permit same-sex marriage.

If Goncalves’ filing encounters numerous appeals and challenges as expected, the Brazilian case would be heard in three federal courts before landing at the Supreme Court. Goncalves thinks it could take 10 years until a final verdict is rendered, but he is confident he will win. " Time is on my side because society will evolve to reject prejudice against gays."

May 30, 2005

Two Million Celebrate Gay Pride In Sao Paulo

Sao Paulo, Brazil – Almost two-million people crammed into Sao Paulo on Sunday for the world’s biggest LGBT Pride celebration. The highlight of the day was the annual Pride Parade that rolled down the skyscraper-lined Avenida Paulista. It was the ninth Pride Parade in Brazil’s financial capital. More than 20 sound trucks blasted music, and floats carryied go-go boys, leather men and drag queens.Brazil’s Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans-gender Pride Parade Association, which organized the celebration, and local officials, said that among the two-million were 700,000 tourists from around the world who flocked to Sao Paulo for the festival. " With [this] many people showing up, the parade is major step to strike people’s prejudice against gays everywhere," said Pedro Almeida, a spokesman with the Pride Parade Association.

The parade’s main theme was the legalization of civil unions in the South American country of 182 million. Civil unions between same-sex couples are permitted only in Brazil’s southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul. Sunday’s parade was the biggest single LGBT event ever held in the world. Last year Sao Paulo’s Pride attracted 1.5 million. By comparison, Pride celebrations in San Francisco, New York and Toronto each attract about 750,000. Meanwhile, about 100,000 people took part in Pride celebrations in Birmingham, England on Sunday. Birmingham Pride is the UK’s largest free gay event, bringing in around $15 million to the city’s economy.

Jerusalem Post

August 7, 2005

Rio’s gay Jews

by Marcus MoraeA
More than 3 million gays, lesbians and their supporters, many dressed in lavish Carnival costumes and waving rainbow-colored flags, paraded in Brazil’s two largest cities earlier this year to celebrate gay pride. Several gay Jews attended, but no Stars of David were seen on flags, T-shirts or floats. " We don’t want overexposure in the media," said Ari Teperman, the founder of Brazil’s only openly gay and lesbian Jewish group, known by its acronym, JGBR. "We are not currently engaged in the fight for civil rights, but rather for Jewish identity," he added.

The group was founded in 1999 by a man known as Akiva Bronstein. Only a few years later, Bronstein unveiled his actual identity as Ari Teperman. "It was my code name when I was still in the closet," he confessed. Today Teperman is JGBR’s main face. His resume includes interviews for news magazines, Mexican television and G Magazine, the country’s major gay magazine. Teperman has long been active in Jewish Web discussion groups, including Pletzale, Brazil’s largest Jewish Web forum. " Despite being the only openly gay member of the group, he gained the respect and friendship of several participants. I would always tell Bronstein to reveal his identity," Gustavo Erlichman, the founder and moderator of Pletzale, said. "By adopting a pseudonym, he became a victim of self-hatred," he added.

Affiliated with the World Congress of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Jews: Keshet Ga’avah, JGBR was born as an online forum for Jewish men and women to talk about their homosexuality and their struggles to fit into Brazil’s Jewish community. Of its 320 members, there are 90 active participants, said Teperman. Most members are male; ages vary from 18 to 60.

How to reconcile homosexuality with Judaism and how the various streams of Judaism relate to homosexuality
are among the major concerns of the group. Gay and lesbian Jews in Brazil had their first off-line experience of social exposure at the Conference of the Jewish Communities of the Americas, held in May 2004. The event, which drew Reform and Conservative Jews from across Latin America, took place in Sao Paulo, which is not only Brazil’s largest city, but also home to half of Brazil’s 120,000 Jews. " It was a milestone for gay Jews in Brazil. Somehow we managed to touch the audience in a human and lovely way about our right to a Jewish identity. Also it opened the doors to more dialogue with the Jewish family," Teperman said.

Estimating that Jews have the same percentage of gays and lesbians as the general population does, Teperman said some 10 percent of Brazilian Jews, or 12,000 people, are homosexual. However, being gay is still tough for Artur Feighelstein, 43, an architect living in Rio de Janeiro. " Jewish culture values the traditional family very much. It expects from every Jewish boy to marry a nice Jewish girl and have children as fast as possible," he said. "Homosexuality is a much greater taboo within the Jewish family. A Jewish parent is still not able to picture his son or daughter making up a traditional family without getting married." For religious families, he added, it’s even worse, since certain biblical passages are seen as prohibiting homosexuality.

Nineteen-year-old D. agreed. He didn’t want to give his name because his family doesn’t know about his sexual orientation. He attends Beit Lubavitch, Rio’s largest Orthodox synagogue. In an e-mail interview, D. said he thinks he’d have trouble if he came out of the closet.
" Brazilian men are expected to be macho. Jewish boys are expected to marry Jewish girls. An Orthodox Jewish male is expected to thank God for not making him a woman. I hate all these religious and social morays but I stick to them because I can’t live away from my family." Dani, a 25-year-old lesbian who asked that only her first name be used, is frustrated by her inability to live a public Jewish life. " I’m not free inside a synagogue," she said.

JGBR is not a religious group. "We don’t intend to preach Judaism for gay Jews. Our goal is to promote social inclusion in the Jewish community," Teperman stressed. According to him, only two out of more than 100 Brazilian synagogues, both of them liberal, openly welcome gays. One of them is Rio de Janeiro’s Congregacao Judaica do Brasil led by Conservative Rabbi Nilton Bonder, where Teperman was once invited to lecture. The other is Sao Paulo’s Congregacao Israelita Paulista led by Reform rabbi Henry Sobel and co-led by a team of Conservative rabbis. CIP is Latin America’s largest synagogue, serving some 2,000 families.

For CIP rabbi Alexandre Leone, the 2004 conference definitely opened the doors for gay Jews at CIP. "Actually there is no organized project, but we are concerned and sensitive to welcoming gay Jews," Leone said. He leads the Friday evening service, Kabbalat Shabbat Neshama, where gays are invited to participate more actively, including taking part in the minyan. " Each one is welcome and valued without labels," Leone added. Teperman and his non-Jewish partner, Ray Ferro, attend the Shabbat service at CIP together. Some 10 other openly gay Jews join in. " There has never been such a visible group of gay Jews like JGBR in Brazil. We’re pioneers," Teperman said. (JTA)


June 18, 2006

Millions celebrate Sao Paulo, Brazil Gay Pride

More than a million people have taken to the streets of Sao Paulo to celebrate the Brazilian city’s tenth annual Gay Pride parade. Revellers dressed in costumes danced through one of the main avenues, as music blared out of huge loudspeakers. One report quoted police as saying that 2.4 million people were at the parade, which organisers say has become the largest of its kind in the world. Gay rights activists say discrimination is still widespread across Brazil. Eighty-one Brazilians were killed last year because of their sexual orientation, campaigners say.

The theme for this year’s event is "homophobia is a crime" to highlight proposed anti-discrimination laws. World Cup costumes When the parade was first staged, it attracted just 2,000 people. Police estimate this year’s festival has attracted 2.4m people, compared with the official crowd count of 1.8m last year, the Associated Press reports. Revellers dressed up as Batman, Elvis Presley, Cinderella and Marie Antoinette. Some took their inspiration from the Oscar-winning movie Brokeback Mountain, whose lead characters are two gay cowboys.Others also gave a nod to the football World Cup, dressing in the team colours of yellow, green and blue. Floats made their way down the Avenida Paulista in the financial heart of Sao Paulo, as dance music blared out of huge loudspeakers.

Sombre message
But correspondents say that behind the revelry is a serious message. One participant, Juliana, said the level of tolerance of homosexuality varied greatly across different parts of Brazil. "Here I guess we are privileged, in Sao Paulo because here we can be open almost every day. But for most of the people, they can’t be open every day at all."
New laws would allow civil unions between same-sex couples across Brazil, which are permitted only in the southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul. But the Roman Catholic Church opposes gay marriage in the country, which is the world’s largest Catholic nation.

Activists say they no longer want to be seen as sinners by the Church. "The traditional church doesn’t want us," said Pastor Justino Luis who started a church serving mostly gay and lesbian parishioners. "I know [God] loves me the way I am, and I know when he made me he planned for me to be the way I am," he said.

Folha Online

November 8, 2006

Lista revela os 10 gays mais poderosos do Brasil; leia destaques GLS

by Sergio Ripardo, Editor de Ilustrada da Folha Online
Para identificar os gays mais influentes do país, a Folha Online elaborou uma lista de dez nomes. São homens que não escondem nem disfarçam sua orientação sexual. O principal critério de escolha foi a capacidade deles de influenciar decisões e comportamentos coletivos. Foram selecionados nomes de várias áreas (política, negócios, universidade, mídia, TV, moda, vida noturna e colunismo), a fim de refletir a diversidade das tribos, que se organizam como focos de poder dentro do mundo GLS.

Bem-sucedidos em suas áreas, estes personagens se revelam em um espaço público de maior tolerância, onde hostilizar homossexuais virou uma atitude socialmente condenável, embora persistam casos de ódio, violência e censura silenciosa. Os escolhidos foram informados sobre a lista.

Sem amapô

No circuito Jardins, a SoGo (alameda Franca, 1368, tel. 0/xx/3061-1759) cancelou a estréia da festa "Wish". Mas confirmou o projeto "Man to Man" no próximo dia 30. A festa acontece sempre na última quinta-feira do mês, quando se proíbe a entrada de mulher. No site do clube, é possível colocar nome na lista.

Campo minado

A alameda Itu virou um problema na noite do sábado, nas redondezas do Bar du Bocage, quase esquina com a Consolação. Forma-se uma multidão no trecho, sem calçadas livres para pedestres. Polícia tem sido chamada para conter excessos, como brigas contra emos, além de jovens que abusam da bebida e saem fazendo arruaças.

Noite de festa

Começa nesta quinta-feira (9) o 14º Mix Brasil em São Paulo, com mais de 300 produções, entre filmes e vídeos, longas e curtas, de 27 países. A produção queria uma performance da Silvetty Montilla em uma banheira, símbolo desta edição. Mas a drag diz não ter tido tempo de trazer uma "jacuzzi digna" da Europa. Os convites para o coquetel no Espaço Unibanco são disputados a tapa.

Inferno no ar

Comissários de bordo conversavam no Director’s Gourmet (alameda Franca, 1552) sobre a recente confusão nos aeroportos, como os atrasos nos vôos. Eles reclamavam que marcar baladas em SP estava meio imprevisível devido ao caos nas escalas. As "bees" só falavam em conhecer a recém-inaugurada Inferno (r. Augusta, 501).

Meninas do centro

As cantoras do extinto bar Pride vão animar as meninas nesta sexta-feira (10), a partir das 22h, com música ao vivo, no Viva Maria (r. Canuto do Val, 85, Santa Cecília, tel. 0/xx/11/5082-4640). Banda Alta Volltagem abre a festa, seguida pela banda Pride, comandada por Sarah Ivam. Varando a madrugada, também se apresentam Leila Lucena, Thiago Pitty, Comanches Pride e Lucia Haidamus.


Notícia do dia: Camisinha colocada em 1 segundo é lançada. Tempo é documento?


Alguns blogs estão postando uma foto de um ator (ex-Globo, ex-Record) ao lado de seu suposto namorado. Os dois estão em um barco, no mar. Blogueiros garantem que o ator desistiu de esconder sua orientação sexual, mas também não vai enviar um comunicado à imprensa com os dizeres "Oi, gente, tudo bem? Eu sou gay. Vocês publicam". O problema é que o ator terminou uma novela e sumiu.

Dicas de sites

"Made in Brazil é um site em inglês, mas traz fotos e notícias sobre os gays brasileiros, como imagens da boate "The Week", em São Paulo.

"ABC Bailão" é o nome de uma casa noturna gay no centro de São Paulo voltada para o público mais maduro. Já reabriu após reforma e mudou o site, depois do surgimento da concorrente Cantho, no largo do Arouche.

Dicas de vídeo

Betina Botox é uma personagem impagável do "Terça Insana". Praticamente "clubber", ela odeia ser chamada de "bichinha" e tem o hábito de pontuar seu raciocínio. Aproveita a banda larga e dá uma olhada na perua Leila ("Filantropia dá uma mídia") e na malvada irmã Selma ("cuidar de criança é uma coisa que relaaaaaaaaxa a gente").

Léo Áquila anunciou no "SuperPop" que desistiu de ser drag. Ele evitou falar mal do Clodovil, mas agulhou Ronaldo Ésper, que nega ser gay. Terminando o assunto "telebarraco", Thammy terminou o namoro com aquela menina, que foi trabalhar em uma boate na Espanha. O fim acontece após Sabrina Sato dar um selinho na filha de Gretchen. Já viu o vídeo do horário eleitoral da Blue Space, no qual a drag promete construir um túnel ligando a Amaral Gurgel e avenida Indianápolis? Hilariante.

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Planet Out

December 2006

Brazil’s Sexiest Beaches

Brazil’s coastline is nearly 5,000 miles long, which makes deciding where to dive in a bit overwhelming without a trusty guide. Beijos!
Praia da Baía do Sancho, Fernando do Noronha Named Brazil’s best beach by Guia Quatro Rodas, the country’s most reputable guidebook, this often-deserted reddish arc of sand, on an island facing a cerulean-blue bit of the Atlantic Ocean, lives up to the hype. Watched over by the archipelago’s symbol, the Two Brothers Peaks, this beach is not only picture-postcard perfect, it’s extremely remote: a little hike, a stepladder between two rock formations, another ladder, then a set of stairs, and tudo bem! The bad news: Due to ecological concerns, the government limits the number of people allowed on the island at any one time to an average of 700 a day, meaning none of the island’s 16 immaculate beaches has much of a scene, gay or straight. The good news: Once you get down to Sancho, you can make your own scene. — Charles Runnette

Jericoacoara, Ceará
Watching the sunrises and sunsets from 10-story sand dunes make Jericoacoara, four hours from Fortaleza, a unique spot — not just in Brazil but anywhere in South America. Its location, on the protruding part of Brazil closest to Europe and Africa, makes it easy to imagine that it the beach, made a clean break from the Sahara Desert across the Atlantic. Pôr do Sol, the highest of the dunes, is surrounded by hundreds of neighbors nearly as tall. The strong winds make it the place to be for windsurfers and sand boarders in the Brazilian spring (our fall). The beach itself is rocky in many places, with dramatic, eroded stone archways set just offshore, perfectly set by Mother Nature to frame the sunsets as you watch from the dunes. — Michael Luongo

Tambaú Beach
If you want to go native — and you know more Portuguese than obrigado — try Tambaú Beach in the small baroque 16th-century city of João Pessoa. Just an hour north of Recife, this clean, out-of-the-way beach may not attract many of the A-list gays. But the crowd has something harder to find these days: an unjaded sweetness. With the turquoise-blue ocean lapping up against the fluffy sand, wind blowing through giant palm trees, colorful fish swimming about in the nearby natural coral pools and the languid locals moving to the faint — or not so faint — sound of samba, you suddenly feel like you’re experiencing a more innocent side of Brazil. And here, in this remote spot at the easternmost edge of the Americas, Brazil is a little cuter and a wee bit less sleazy. Of course, if you’re over it and jonesing for sleazy, it’s never far: A mixed nudist beach, Tambaba, is just a short and cheap cab ride away. — Charles Runnette

Praia dos Artistas
Even a lost tourist will have no problem figuring out Salvador’s gayest beach. The first clues are the young gays sitting on the balustrades of the walkway overlooking the beach, often hanging out with their lesbian friends. Linger and check out the scene on the beach kiosk on the sidewalk here, close to the bus stop. Then, descend the cruisey ramp to the beach and admire the musclebound locals toning their chests on the exercise bars at its base, as svelte but equally beautiful Speedo-clad admirers look on. The gentle ocean is just steps away, with Salvador’s famous Farro lighthouse overlooking the action. Families hang out nearby on the edges of the gay zone; in the water, everyone mixes without an issue. As night descends, watch the sunset from the walkway, but head back home before it gets too dark; the area can be dangerous at night. — Michael Luongo

Morro de São Paulo, Bahia
Palm tree-covered rocky hills and sandy dunes typify this almost secret island getaway, a two-hour boat ride from Salvador unknown to most outsiders. The area was a little on the grungy side up until just a few years ago. But modernization, with upgraded hotels, is the current trend, as people are beginning to discover the island and its nearly 400-year colonial history. Do your beach-hopping by numbers, with First through Fourth beaches easy to find and play around on. Only Praia do Encanto ("enchanted beach") breaks the pattern. The main thing to do on this island is drink, eat and sleep on the beach, with swimming breaks in the permanently warm and calm water. — Michael Luongo

Praia do Espelho
Coconut and palm trees line the beaches of Espelho, two hours south of Porto Seguro by Land Rover. The dirt roads can get waterlogged in the remnants of the Atlantic rain forest, although locals often travel by car and dune buggy. Stop at Darley’s for food and drink, then let a guide lead you down to Praia do Amores and Praia do Espelho. A favorite getaway for the rich and famous, Espelho’s uninterrupted coastline offers privacy and total escape in a setting of unsurpassed beauty: a sapphire sky, calm green waters and virgin white sands. With all that scenery, who needs a scene? — Mack Friedman

Arraial d’Ajuda
A lovely historic village in the Bahia region, Arraial d’Ajuda is an ideal locale for a romantic vacation. Fly to Porto Seguro and take the ferry across the channel, then catch the public bus ($0.50) to a friendly guesthouse. The lesbian-owned Pousada Verde Agua Praia offers charming rustic rooms (perfect for cuddline) and access to a slender beachfront with clear, turquoise waters (perfect for snorkeling). If you have kids, try the Ecoparque Aquatico water park and Praia Parana. Catch the bus to town (it runs every 10 minutes) and enjoy delicious Bahian cuisine, souvenirs and caipirinhas (a cross between mojitos and margaritas, with sugarcane liquor and limes). — Mack Friedman

This small colonial town rests on the grassy plateau of a bluff overlooking the Atlantic and the Discovery Coast. Each house in the main square, the Quadrado, is painted a different color, and there are no addresses: Mail is addressed to the blue house, the red house, et cetera. The main beach at Trancoso is accessible by trekking through the emerald rain forest behind the Jesuit mission São João Church, or down paths behind well-appointed hotels that hug the hillsides. The beaches are quiet and relaxed — excellent for sunning, swimming and admiring the yellow and green warblers chirping in the mangroves. — Mack Friedman

Praia Geriba
Of the 23 beaches that surround Búzios, Praia Geriba is the biggest and most popular — good for surfing, swimming and revelry of all kinds. The hard, flat sand is great for running and soccer. This beach is serviced by food and drink vendors and is close to less-expensive hostels. Those wanting a more private experience can walk to nearby Praia Ferradurinha, following a path between the last two bars on the eastern end of Geriba. Spend the morning on Geriba, then head to downtown Búzios for afternoon crepes or fresh Thai seafood on the Rua das Pedras. — Mack Friedman

Olho de Boi
A spectacularly beautiful enclave, Olho de Boi is a 20-minute hike up and over a steep hill that divides it from the south end of Praia Brava. Park at the entrance to Brava and wander toward the snaking red path. The path itself is easy to navigate: Just follow the trail that goes straight up and straight down. Olho de Boi is a naturist beach popular with straight couples and gay men — surrounded by smooth basalt cliffs with perfect tanning ledges and accessible only by foot. Olho de Boi has no natural shade or beach vendors, so stock up on water, and bring a parasol if you’re planning to spend more than an hour. — Mack Friedman

One of the most incredible urban beaches in the world, Ipanema is a sublime blend of sports, sun, flirting, surfing and people-watching. The neighborhood is upscale, with trendy shops, sleek clubs and fine dining, but you can still buy steamed corn and cold beer from beach vendors for a dollar. Ipanema is almost a mile long, divided by lifeguard towers (postos). The gay and lesbian section is wide, and well-integrated into the rest of the beach. It is demarcated by rainbow flags that fly from the white kiosks between Postos 6 and 7. When the sun goes down, shimmy over to Farme de Amoedo and Teixeira de Melo streets for snacks, drinks, cruising and dancing. — Mack Friedman

Copacabana is famous for gentle curves and jaw-dropping views of Sugarloaf Mountain. Go in the winter (June-September) if you surf: Swells can reach seven feet. If you’d rather loll in the hot sun surrounded by eye candy, time your trip for December through February. Buy an acai copão (a luscious frozen slush of purple Amazon berries) from the promenade stands; don’t forget to wear your board shorts (you too, girls) over your bikinis; and don’t you dare come without your havaineros (flip-flops). The gay and lesbian kiosk cuts a smaller swath than in Ipanema, but it’s more diverse and is very transgender-friendly. — Mack Friedman

After watching the city host the world’s biggest Pride celebration this year (2.4 million strong), the world’s biggest question was,
"Where do those throngs of young, landlocked gay Paulistas (people from São Paulo) get those sexy tan lines?" When they don’t have the time or money to jet off to Ipanema or Punte del Este, they head south to long and lively Maresias. On weekends, the trip by car along Route 55, which should take an hour, takes over two. But that’s when the scene heats up, with boy-on-boy, bikini-clad flirting on the beach; girl-on-girl dancing at Sirena nightclub; and the new gay guesthouse, Ilhas Helênicas, proving this beach town is not just bi-curious, it’s straight-up queer. — Charles Runnette

Praia Mole
Hometown of crazy, sexy 2(x)ist model Raphael Verga; the only South American stop on the World Surfing tour; and a favorite Brazilian vacation hangout for Gisele Bundchen — it should come as no surprise that the gays have staked a partial claim to the best of the 42 unspoiled beaches on the 300-square-mile chic resort island of Santa Catarina. Praia Mole has got it all — beautiful white sand, killer waves and lush vegetation. And even though it’s not close to Florianopolis, the island’s main town, there are always plenty of hot, honey-skinned locals and sexy surfer boys and girls to ogle in the high season (September-May). And if you’re feeling too constrained in that slip of a bikini, there’s a nude section (galhetas) that’s very popular with the gay crowd … shocker! — Charles Runnette

22 March 2007

Brazil’s considers outlawing homophobia

by Ian Dunt
Debate continues in Brazil over government proposals to criminalise homophobia. Under the proposals, Roman Catholic priests and other clergy might face two to five years in prison for preaching against homosexuality. A rector of a seminary who refuses admission to a homosexual student could face three to five years.
The Brazilian Senate was supposed to vote on the legislation last Thursday, but it declined to do so.

Instead, it formed a working group which will organise public audiences to hear specialist representations on the subject. Some specialists are concerned that the legislation could imply a legal framework for religious persecution. Homosexuality has been legal in Brazil since the 1830’s, except in the armed forces. Large areas of Brazil are now covered by state civil union laws and federal legislation may soon follow. Last year, the Brazilian government sponsored a debate on GLBT rights at a Mercosur conference of ten South American nations. The group, which represents the majority of the population and land area of South America, agreed to enshrine same-sex and transgender rights in all member states’ human rights legislation.


June 11, 2007

Sao Paulo Gay Pride attracts thousands

Sao Paulo, June 11 (UPI) – Brazil’s annual gay pride parade through the streets of its largest city attracted hundreds of thousands of revelers. According to organizers, about 2.5 million people flooded Sao Paulo’s main thoroughfare, Avenida Paulista, O Globo TV reported Monday. The annual gay pride parade in Brazil’s economic capital is considered the world’s largest. This year’s edition for the first time was backed by the federal government, which in recent years has been an outspoken supporter of gay rights in the country.

16th August 2007

Brazilian football’s gay rumours land judge in trouble

by Writer
Football is for real men, not gays. That was the stance Brazilian judge Manoel Maximiniano Junqueira Filho decided to take when making a ruling in a defamation case appearing before his bench. That may be his sentiments, but the law doesn’t call for that sort of ruling and now the judge could face legal actions himself. The case was brought earlier this month by Richarlyson Barbosa Felisbino, a San Paulo player, who claimed that the manager from a rival team made claims that Felisbino was gay on national television.

Felisbino filed a defamation case against the manger, and the case was scheduled before Judge Filho, who has a history of homophobic and racist rulings. Filho dismissed the claim, but not before adding a few of his own personal comments about the case. "What I cannot understand is why the gay association of Bahia and a few columnists insist on promoting gay athletes in the field. Filho said about the media surrounding the athletes. Jeez, if this fad catches on, soon we will have a quota system, forcing the access of so many of them per team."

Filho said football was a virile masculine sport and not a homosexual one, and commented that a homosexual on the team would destroy the integrity of the sport and ruin team morale. And don’t say that this opening will be in the same way that it happened when blacks started to be part of the teams," he added to drive home his point. If you were a homosexual, it would be better to admit it or to conceal it completely, however, if that was the case, it would be better to abandon the playing field," he added. Filho’s ruling is being appealed, but the rhetoric that the judge felt compelled to add has now become more controversial than the original case. The judge is now expecting to face legal discipline and could be sanctioned for his comments.

International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commision

August 30, 2007

First Hurdle for LGBT Rights Passed Within Latin American Economic Union

For Immediate Release
Contacts: Marcelo Ferreyra, IGLHRC Latin America Regional Coordinator,

On August 7, 2007, the first significant step in promoting region-wide sexual and gender rights in Latin America was taken when the human rights committee of the Southern Common Market issued a declaration to recognize and promote an end to discrimination against sexual and gender minorities by member countries. Should the entire Southern Common Market pass the resolution, it will result in sweeping changes to the rights and policies affecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Latin America, according to the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC).

The MERCOSUR (Mercado Común del Sur, or Southern Common Market) is a regional trade and integration agreement among a number of Latin American countries. Its origins date to 1985 when the Presidents of Brazil and Argentina signed an economic cooperation pact. Current full member states are Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay. Associated members are Chile, Venezuela, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru. In December 2004, the Associated States Human Rights High Authorities was formed to address the integration process among these Latin American members with regard to promoting human rights in the region. "This is a truly ground breaking opportunity for achieving the promise of full human rights throughout Latin America for sexual and gender minorities," said Marcelo Ferreyra, IGLHRC’s Regional Coordinator for Latin America and the Caribbean, who participated in the session. "We are confident that the governments will adopt the subcommittee’s declaration and set it on the road to a full resolution of the entire MERCOSUR."

Over the last year, IGLHRC played an instrumental role in coordinating LGBT groups within the MERCOSUR countries to form a MERCOSUR LGBT federation to ensure that the rights of LGBT people would be integrated into trade and other agreements in the region. When the MERCOSUR met in early August in Montevideo, Uruguay, a specific session on Sexual Diversity, Identity and Gender was held. IGLHRC and the MERCOSUR LGBT federation joined a range of civil society, human rights, and government officials in presenting to the High Authorities the urgent need to adopt clear policies for eradicating sexual orientation and gender identity/expression discrimination in these countries. The declaration, reprinted below in full, calls on Latin American governments to Repeal of laws that discriminate against LGBT people Promote public awareness and education plans Increase involvement of LGBT people at all levels of public education Take action to end police harassment and persecution Adopt laws to protect same-sex couples and their families Ease name change and registration for transgender people Create government agencies to support and provide services to LGBT people Promote inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity in the draft of the Inter-American Convention Against Racism and All Forms of Discrimination Convene a regional entity to monitor state compliance.

The MERCOSUR LGBT working network was created in May 2006 in Rosario, Argentina, with the goal of having an impact on the human rights policies adopted by the MERCOSUR. "If this is declaration is ultimately adopted as a resolution by the MERCOSUR, it will mark the single biggest global development for the LGBT community since the range of inter-European entities set out to abolish discrimination and the criminalization of homophobia in Europe," said Paula Ettelbrick, Executive Director of IGLHRC. Having full government support from so many Latin American countries will have a substantial global impact as these countries vote on human rights measures at the Organization of American States and United Nations," added Ferreyra.


What Does the Document Says:
(Unofficial translation)
Montevideo, Uruguay, August 7th 2007

The MERCOSUR Human Rights High Authorities Seminary on Sexual Diversity, Identity and Gender, organized by the Uruguay Pró-Têmpore Presidency, expresses the urgent need to work for sexual orientation and gender identity / expression discrimination eradication in these countries and to recognize Sexual Diversity Rights as Human Rights.

For this we considerer that it is necessary:

– To revoke and/or to modify any kind of legislation and/or discriminatory regulation criminalizing lesbians, gays, bisexuals and trans people, and/or restrict any exercise and enjoyment of their complete civil rights. In this sense, to revoke any kind of legislation or regulation prohibiting gay, lesbian, bisexual and/or trans people from blood donation.

– To generate and/or impel cross-sectional public policies in all Governmental areas (as the "Brazil without Homophobia" and the Argentinean "National Plan against Discrimination" policies intend to do), nondiscriminatory laws, programs and actions, in the scope of education, health, work, etc., that specifically promote sexual orientation and gender identity/expression nondiscrimination, specially those allowing trans people access to those areas. In the case of enacted laws, these should be applied in ways that guarantee their operability, overturning the burden of proof. To fulfill this task it is important to establish a direct bond with civil society so that political decisions will emerge from joint work.

– To promote the inclusion of LGBT people’s Human Rights content in education (public and private, institutional and non-institutional) at all levels, including educator trainings, and to stimulate campaigns that tend to lessen prejudices based on sexual orientation and gender identity/expression discrimination. To promote groups investigation of sexual diversity related issues.

– To take political decisions and actions that definitively stop security force harassment, discrimination, persecution and repression of LGBT people, especially towards trans people, in each country.

– To generate laws that guarantee the same protection and rights recognized for heterosexual family to LGBT people and their families, creating legal institutions like society of coexistence, concubinary union, civil union pacts or any comparable access to same sex marriage.

– To create laws to allow trans people to change their name and sex registration without any kind of surgical or medical requirements, and that guarantees public and free access to sex reassignment treatments and surgeries for those that wish it.

– To generate specific state institutional spaces to work on sexual orientation and identity/gender expression discrimination topics and to inform civil society about these bodies. To give those bodies the ability to receive and systematize complaints, to provide concrete answers according to each case, and, in addition, to allow them design and evaluate public policies in each place.

– To compel its political will to urge the inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity expression in the Inter-American Convention Against Racism and all Forms of Discrimination and Intolerance draft text that is being discussed at the OAS.

– To urge the creation of a discriminatory practices Regional Observatory that includes discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity/expression where civil society organizations interacts with the MERCOSUR Human Rights High Authorities and MERCOSUR parliamentarians, between others, to investigate, study, discuss and attend to those issues. To make this observatory able to produce information annually on the situation of LGBT people in the region and to be presented before national and international forums.

We recognize the need to advocate the development of the required measures enunciated in this declaration in each of our countries. We commit ourselves to organize another seminary, promoting the participation of the chancelleries and authorities of each different country; to permanently incorporate sexual diversity issues at the meetings of MERCOSUR Human Rights High Authorities (RAADDHH), across all groups, commissions and programs; to include sexual diversity issues on each country’s periodic Human Rights reports, for instance those before the CCPR and the CERD; and to study and to consider inclusion of the Yogyakarta Principles as subject for the next meeting, with the objective being to consider States Members’ support.


September 17, 2007

Gay Rights Gain Ground Around Globe, Now mature in the west, gay power is growing worldwide, even in the land of machismo

by Joseph Contreras, Newsweek International
After eight years together, Gilberto Aranda and Mauricio List walked into a wedding chapel in the Mexico City neighborhood of Coyoacán last
April and tied the knot in front of 30 friends and relatives. Aranda’s disapproving father was not invited to the springtime nuptials. For the newlyweds, the ceremony marked the fruit of the gay-rights movement’s long struggle to gain recognition in Mexico. The capital city had legalized gay civil unions only the month before. "After all the years of marches and protests," says Aranda, 50, a state-government official, "a sea change was coming."

The sea change spreads beyond Mexico City, a cosmopolitan capital that is home to a thriving community of artists and intellectuals.The growing maturity of the gay-rights movement in the West is having a marked effect on the developing world. In the United States, the Republican Party is in trouble in part because it has made a fetish of its opposition to gay marriage. At least some gays in big cities like New York question why they are still holding "pride" parades, as if they were still a closeted minority and not part of the Manhattan mainstream. Since 2001, Western European countries like Belgium, the Netherlands and Spain have gone even farther than the United States, placing gay and lesbian partners on the same legal footing as their heterosexual counterparts. And now, the major developing powers of Asia, Latin America and Africa are following the liberal road—sometimes imitating Western models, sometimes not—but in all cases setting precedents that could spread to the remaining outposts of official homophobia.

In Mexico, the declining clout and prestige of the Roman Catholic Church have emboldened gay-rights activists and their allies in state legislatures and city councils to pass new laws legalizing same-sex civil unions, starting with Mexico City in November. The rising influence of tolerant Western pop culture has encouraged gay men and lesbians to proclaim their sexuality in gay-pride marches like the one in the Brazilian city of São Paulo in June, which drew 3 million participants, according the event’s organizers. It was the largest ever in Brazil. Western models also helped inspire South Africa to legalize civil unions in November 2006, thus becoming the first country in the developing world to do so. In China, the trend goes back to the climate of economic reform that took hold in the 1980s, ending the persecution of the era of Mao Zedong, who considered homosexuals products of the "moldering lifestyle of capitalism." Among left-wing movements in many developing countries, globalization is a favorite scapegoat for all of the planet’s assorted ills. But even those who resist the West’s basically conservative free-market economic orthodoxy are quick to acknowledge the social liberalism—including respect for the rights of women and minorities of all kinds—that is the West’s main cultural and legal export. "I think it helped that Spain and other parts of Europe had passed similar laws," says longtime Mexican gay-rights activist Alejandro Brito. "These types of laws are becoming more about human rights than gay issues."

Key people have hastened the trend in some countries. Some activists single out a few political celebrities for de-stigmatizing their cause, including Nelson Mandela, who readily embraced British actor Sir Ian McKellen’s suggestion that he support a ban on discrimination on the basis of sexual preference in South Africa’s first post-apartheid constitution, and former prime minister Tony Blair, whose government was the first to recognize civil partnerships between same-sex couples. They also point to activist judges in Brazil, South Africa and the European Court of Human Rights, who have handed down landmark rulings that unilaterally granted gay, lesbian and transgender communities new rights. These include a judicial order that gays be admitted into the armed forces of European Union member states. The biggest and perhaps most surprising change is in Latin America, the original home of machismo. In 2002, the Buenos Aires City Council approved Latin America’s first-ever gay-civil-union ordinance, and same-gender unions are the law of the land in four Brazilian states today. Last year an openly homosexual fashion designer was elected to Brazil’s National Congress with nearly a half a million votes. In August a federal-court judge in the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul broke new legal ground when he ordered the national-health-care system to subsidize the cost of sex-change operations in public hospitals, thereby putting sexual "reassignment" on par with heart surgery, organ transplants and AIDS treatment as medical procedures worthy of taxpayer support. By the year-end, Colombia could become the first country in Latin America to grant gay and lesbian couples full rights to health insurance, inheritance and social-security benefits. A bill containing those reforms is working its way through the National Congress at present. And even Cuba has turned a corner. In the 1960s and early 1970s homosexuals in Cuba were blacklisted or even banished to forced-labor camps along with Jehovah’s Witnesses, Catholic priests and other so-called social misfits. HIV patients were locked away in sanitariums as recently as 1993. Several Cuban cities now host gay and lesbian film festivals. The hit TV program on the island’s state-run airwaves last year was "The Hidden Side of the Moon," a soap opera about a married man who falls in love with a man and later tests positive for HIV.

The push for "more modern ways of thinking" about minorities, feminists and homosexuals has roots that go back to the political ferment that shook the region in the late 1960s and 1970s, says Braulio Peralta, author of a 2006 book on gay rights in Mexico, "The Names of Rainbow." But it has gained in recent years, due in part to troubles in the Roman Catholic Church, which includes eight out of 10 Mexicans and long stood opposed to any attempt to redefine marriage laws. Last November, the Mexico City Legislature took up the civil-union law just as the country’s top cardinal, Norberto Rivera Carrera, was facing charges that he had sheltered a Mexican priest accused of sexually abusing children in California. The prelate chose to stay under the radar as the vote loomed. "The Catholic Church was facing a credibility crisis," says longtime Mexico City-based gay-rights activist Brito. "So many of its leaders including Rivera knew that if they fiercely opposed the gay-union law, the news media would eat them alive." The change in attitudes is most vivid in the sparsely populated border state of Coahuila, an unlikely setting for blazing trails on gay rights. The left-wing political party that rules the national capital has made few inroads here. Yet soon after the state’s young governor, Humberto Moreira Valdés, was elected in 2006, he backed a civil-union bill modeled on France’s pacts of civil solidarity, and in the state capital of Saltillo the progressive Catholic bishop added his support. The 62-year-old prelate, Raul Vera, says he was comfortable doing so in part because the bill stopped short of calling for same-sex marriage. "As the church I said we could not assume the position of homophobes," he says. "We cannot marginalize gays and lesbians. We cannot leave them unprotected."

That seems to be the prevailing consensus in South Africa’s ruling party. The constitution adopted by South Africa after the African National Congress (ANC) took power in 1994 was the world’s first political charter to outlaw discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. In November 2006, the national Parliament overwhelmingly approved a civil-union bill after the country’s constitutional court called for amendments to a 44-year-old marriage law that denied gay and lesbian couples the legal right to wed. In pushing for approval of the Civil Union Act, the ruling ANC shrugged off both conservative opposition parties and religious leaders, some of whom accused the government of imposing the morality of a "radical homosexual minority" on South Africans. President Thabo Mbeki had been blasted by gay rights activists in the past for trying to downplay his country’s raging HIV/AIDS epidemic, but on the issue of same-sex civil unions his government stood firm. The sweeping terms of the 2006 Civil Union Act placed South Africa in a select club of nations that have enacted similar laws and that, until last year, included only Canada, Belgium, Spain and the Netherlands. But there are glimmers of change in other nations. China decriminalized sodomy a decade ago and removed homosexuality from its list of mental disorders in 2001. Police broke up a gay and lesbian festival in Beijing in 2005 but took no action last February against an unauthorized rally in support of legalizing gay marriage. The Chinese Communist Party has established gay task forces in all provincial capitals to promote HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention. And in April a Web site launched a weekly hour-long online program called Connecting Homosexuals with an openly gay host. It is the first show in China to focus entirely on gay issues.

Tolerance, however, by no means spans the globe. Homosexuality remains taboo throughout the greater Middle East. In most of the Far East, laws permitting gay and lesbian civil unions are many years if not decades away. In Latin America, universal acceptance of homosexuality is a long way off. Jamaica is a hotbed of homophobia. Even in Mexico, the first couple to take advantage of Coahuila’s new civil-union statute were fired from their jobs as sales clerks after their boss realized they were lesbians. The new Mexico City law grants same-gender civil unions property and inheritance rights, but not the right to adopt children. Even Mexican gays who still struggle against daily bias see signs of improvement, however. In 2003 José Luis Ramírez landed work as a buyer at the Mexico City headquarters of a leading department-store chain, and things were going swimmingly until he brought his boyfriend to a company-hosted dinner with clients. "My boss’s face just dropped," recalls Ramírez. Ramírez was subsequently denied promotions and left the company last year. But sexuality "isn’t an issue" with his current employer, a new household-furnishings retailer.

Tolerance is now the majority, at least among the young. A 2005 poll by the Mitofsky market-research firm found that 50 percent of all Mexicans between the ages of 18 and 29 supported proposals to allow gay marriage. Karla Lopez met Karina Almaguer on the assembly line of a Matamoros auto-stereo factory. The two became the first Mexican couple to marry under the civil-union bill; Lopez, now 30, is a mother of three. She urges more gays and lesbians to follow her example and come out publicly. "I felt strange at first because people would judge us and look at us from head to toe," she says. "But I now feel more secure and at ease." If more political leaders, clergymen and judges act to legitimize folks like Karla Lopez, the new mood of tolerance will surely proliferate across the planet in her lifetime.

With Monica Campbell in Mexico City, Mac Margolis in Porto Alegre, Karen MacGregor in Durban, Quindlen Krovatin in Beijing and Anna Nemtsova in Moscow

From: ABGLT-Brazilian Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Association November 30, 2007

Brazil’s President Lula convenes unprecedented Conference for LGBT
–1st National Conference will define guidelines for public policies for LGBT (Portuguese version below)

The President of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, has signed an unprecedented decree convening the 1st National Conference of Lesbians, Gay Men, Bisexuals and Trans Persons (LGBT). The decree was published in the Official Gazette on November 29th 2007. With the theme “Human Rights and Public Policies: the way forward to ensuring the citizenship of Lesbians, Gay Men, Bisexuals and Trans persons”, the National Conference will be held from May 9th to 11th 2008, having 60% civil society participation and 40% governmental participation. Approximately 700 people are expected to take part. The aim of the Conference is to propose the guidelines for the implementation of public policies and the national plan to promote the citizenship and human rights of Lesbians, Gay Men, Bisexuals and Trans Persons, as well as to evaluate the Brazil Without Homophobia Programme and propose strategies to strengthen it.

Prior to the National Conference, conferences will be held in Brazil ’s 27 states to develop initial proposals and elect the delegates to the National Conference. A comprehensive organizing committee comprised of 16 ministries, the Parliamentary Front for LGBT Citizenship and 18 representatives of the LGBT movement has the task of writing the internal rules of the Conference as well as guidelines for the state level LGBT conferences, in addition to accompanying the organization of the National Conference. The overall organization of the Conference is the responsibility of the Special Department for Human Rights, which has ministerial status and reports directly to the President’s Office.

The 16 ministries taking part in the organizing committee are: Special Department for Human Rights (2 seats), Education, Health, Labour and Employment, Justice, Culture, Sports, Cities, Social Security, Social Development, Foreign Office, Racial Equality, Women’s Policies, Tourism, Communications and the General Secretariat of the President’s Office. The Parliamentary Front for LGBT Citizenship, which will have one seat on the organizing committee, is currently comprised of 208 Representatives and 16 Senators and is active in promoting LGBT issues in the National Congress and in articulations with the Federal Government.

The 18 LGBT representatives are from the following organizations: ABGLT (Brazilian Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Association) – 7 seats; ANTRA (National Articulation of Trans Persons) – 2 seats; National Collective of Transsexuals – 2 seats; Brazilian Articulation of Lesbians – 2 seats; LGBT Afro Network – 1 seat; Brazilian League of Lesbians – 2 seats; ABRAGAY (Brazilian Gay Association) – 1 seat; Grupo E-Jovem (youth) – 1 seat.

An unofficial translation of the President’s Decree follows below: Further information:

Toni Reis – President of ABGLT (Brazilian Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Association): ; + 55 41 3232 9829 / +55 41
3222 3999

Léo Mendes – Secretário de Comunicação da ABGLT: ; +55 62 8405 2405


Presidente Lula convoca Conferência inédita GLBT

1ª Conferência Nacional proporá o plano de políticas públicas para GLBT ( abaixo release em Inglês)

O Presidente Lula assinou em 28 de novembro um decreto inédito convocando a realização da 1ª Conferência Nacional de Gays, Lésbicas, Bissexuais, Travestis e Transexuais (GLBT). O decreto foi publicado no Diário Oficial da União no dia 29 de novembro de 2007.

Com a temática “Direitos Humanos e Políticas Públicas:
O caminho para garantir a cidadania de Gays, Lésbicas, Bissexuais, Travestis e Transexuais”, a Conferência Nacional será realizada em Brasília de 9 a 11 de maio de 2008, com 60% de participação da sociedade civil e 40% participação do governo. Espera-se a participação de aproximadamente 700 pessoas.

O objetivo da Conferência é propor as diretrizes para a implementação de políticas públicas e o plano nacional de promoção da cidadania e direitos humanos de Gays, Lésbicas, Bissexuais, Travestis e Transexuais, bem como avaliar e propor estratégias para fortalecer o Programa Brasil Sem Homofobia.

Antes da Conferência Nacional, conferências serão realizadas em todos os estados brasileiros a fim de desenvolver propostas iniciais e eleger os(as) delegados(as) que participarão da Conferência Nacional.

A 1ª Conferência Nacional de GLBT segue o exemplo de outras conferências nacionais realizadas para determinar políticas públicas em áreas específicas, como a saúde, mulheres, idosos e igualdade racial.

Uma Comissão Organizadora abrangente composta por 16 ministérios, a Frente Parlamentar pela Cidadania GLBT e 18 representantes dos movimentos GLBT tem a tarefa de elaborar o regimento interno da Conferência, orientar as conferências estaduais e acompanhar a organização da Conferência. A Secretaria Especial dos Direitos Humanos da Presidência da República é responsável pela organização do processo.

Os 16 ministérios participando da comissão organizadora são: Secretaria Especial dos Direitos Humanos (2 vagas), Educação, Saúde, Trabalho e Emprego, Justiça, Cultura, Esportes, Cidades, Previdência, Desenvolvimento Social, Relações Exteriores, Igualdade Racial, Políticas para as Mulheres, Turismo, Comunicações e a Secretaria Geral da Presidência da República.

A Frente Parlamentar pela Cidadania GLBT, que terá uma vaga na comissão organizadora, é composta por 208
Deputados(as) Federais e 16 Senadores(as), e é atuante na promoção de questões GLBT no Congresso Nacional e em articulações com o Governo Federal a este respeito.

Os 18 representantes GLBT vêm das seguintes
organizações: ABGLT (Associação Brasileira de Gays, Lésbicas, Bissexuais, Travestis e Transexuais) – 7 vagas; ANTRA (Articulação Nacional de Travestis e Transexuais) – 2 vagas; Coletivo Nacional de Transexuais – 2 vagas; Articulação Brasileira de Lésbicas – 2 vagas; Rede Afro GLBT– 1 vaga; Liga Brasileira de Lésbicas – 2 vagas; ABRAGAY (Associação Brasileira de Gays) – 1 vaga; Grupo E-Jovem – 1 vaga.

A íntegra do Decreto Presidencial segue abaixo:

Informações adicionais:

Toni Reis – Presidente da ABGLT (Associação Brasileira de Gays, Lésbicas, Bissexuais, Travestis e
Transexuais):; 41 9602 8906 /
41 3232 9829 / 41 3222 3999

Léo Mendes – Secretário de Comunicação da ABGLT 62
8405 2405

ABC News

December 1, 2007

Brazil to Dispense Condoms in Schools
: Brazil’s Government Plans to Install Condom Dispensers in Schools to Fight AIDS

Rio De Janeiro, Brazil (AP) – Brazil’s government announced plans to put condom-dispensing machines in public schools to help teenagers reduce the spread of AIDS. The health and education ministries and the United Nations sponsored a nationwide contest for students to design the dispenser. Three potential models were selected on Friday, the government news agency Agencia Brasil said.

Condom machines are to be installed in 100 public schools in 2008, officials said. The head of the National Program of Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Mariangela Simao, said part of the project is educational and aims not to "banalize" the use of condoms. She said 100,000 schools were involved with the anti-AIDS program. Health Minister Jose Gomes Temporao this week said young Brazilians between 13 and 24 were the target of Brazil’s anti-AIDS campaign this year. Nearly 70,000 cases of AIDS were registered among Brazilians under 24, or about 16 percent of the cases reported in the country, according to the anti-AIDS program.

Brazil provides free AIDS drugs to anyone who needs them and has aggressively pushed drug manufacturers to lower prices.

3rd December 2007

Brazilian president calls national LGBT conference

by staff writer
Gay rights activists have praised Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, the President of Brazil, for announcing that he is convening the first national conference of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and trans persons (LGBT). New York-based Human Rights Watch has urged people to write to Mr da Silva to congratulate him on his decision to call the conference. His decree was published in the Official Gazette last week. "It will be a very significant event for LGBT rights in Brazil," said Toni Reis, president of ABGLT, the Brazilian gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans association.
"700 people are expected to take part, 60% civil society and 40% government. The conference is being organised by the government. There is strong opposition from religious fundamentalists and at this time it is important to provide support and congratulate the President and the Minister for Human Rights."

The national conference, Human Rights and Public Policies: the way forward to ensuring the citizenship of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and trans persons, will be held from May 9th to 11th 2008. Conferences will be held in Brazil’s 27 states to develop initial proposals and elect the delegates to the national gathering. The conference is expected to propose the guidelines for the implementation of public policies and the national plan to promote the citizenship and human rights of LGBT people. It will also evaluate the Brazil Without Homophobia Programme and propose strategies to strengthen it.

An organising committee comprised of 16 ministries, the Parliamentary Front for LGBT Citizenship and 18 representatives of the LGBT movement has the task of writing the internal rules of the Conference as well as guidelines for the state level LGBT conferences, in addition to accompanying the organisation of the national conference. Homosexuality has been legal in Brazil since 1823, except in the armed forces, and civil unions are allowed in some areas. The country plays host to some of the largest gay celebrations in the world – two million members from Brazil’s LGBT community gathered in Sao Paulo earlier this year for the 10th annual Sao Paulo Gay Pride. However, homophobia and gay-bashing remain significant problems in the country of 184 million people.


December 12, 2007

Brazil presents two new gay magazines

Our big Brazilian LGBT Market is showing its power with two new gay magazines:

JUNIOR ( second edition ) and DOM ( first edition ).

JUNIOR Magazine is bi-monthly and this edition is offering some beautiful articles about gay man couples, Brazilian underwear’s, and also the soccer players from the International Gay Football Association, that happened in Buenos Aires .

DOM Magazine is monthly, with the idea to offer different articles about the gay life style, gastronomy, fashion, beautiful pictures, tourism, and much more.

If you and your company are thinking about new market for your business and vacation, try BRAZIL and enjoy this incredible country. We are waiting for your visit and to grow up together.

Brazil had 177 Gay Parades in 2007, from a very small town in the middle of the Amazon rain forest, to the famous beach of Copacabana in Rio de Janeiro, to the big metropolis of Sao Paulo (the biggest gay pride in the world) – and more than 150 different GLBT events and parties. Brazil is one of the biggest frontiers of the LGBT World Market.

Clovis Casemiro.
Sales Manager TAM Viagens Turismo GLS.
IGLTA Ambassador for Brazil. www.iglta.or