LGBT+ individuals constitute the most vulnerable population segment segment in Central America, especially when their sexual and gender identities intersect with working class backgrounds, indigenous or afro-descendant lineage, and other marginalized identities that still suffer badly in a region rife with political and criminal violence, and gross social inequalities.

Fundación Igualitxs strives to change their stories and build a society that is more just, equitable, and democratic, a region that fully respects human dignity and extends opportunity to those hitherto left outside traditional interest groups. Fundación Igualitxs has had significant impact in the struggle for LGBT+ rights in Costa Rica, and to a lesser extent in El Salvador, leveraging its limited resources and the ingenuity of its members across a three-planked axis: academia, strategic litigation, and campaigning.

 The next step is to establish working offices that develop our projects in Central America. Tackling discriminatory laws is of the highest priority, overturning bans on blood donation, military service, discrimination in healthcare, and access to marriage. Campaigns focus on storytelling efforts to demystify the lives of LGBT+ individuals and win hearts and minds to meet the populist Evangelical ideologues seeking to poison perceptions and prospects of an already precarious community.

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Fundación Igualitos is the leading Think Tank, strategic litigation and campaigning center forLGBT rights in Central America. 

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Check out our founder and president in action!!!!!!

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Check it out by yourself: warning you will cry.

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Fundación igualitos

 

The Latin American Foundation for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of the LGBTI Population - Igualitos Foundation - arises from the idea that, in a constitutional State of law, all people are equal regardless of race, sex, religion or sexual orientation . That is why it is proposed that civil institutions offered by a democratic state, should be accessible to all people. This is in application of the legal principles that regulate human rights in democracies: respect for minorities, progression of rights, promotion of plurality, secularism of the State, as well as equality of dignity of all people.

The discrimination suffered by unrepresented minority groups is real and affects thousands of men and women in the country. This discrimination does not distinguish social status, age or profession. It affects different areas of life (social, family, work) and has come to the point of claiming the lives of many innocent people whose only crime has been to be different. In El Salvador, many LGBT people die every year because of intolerance to sexual diversity.

The law is an objective standard of actions that are considered acceptable or unacceptable in a society. Changing the law, to the point of including rather than excluding, is a giant step in promoting the inclusion of groups that have historically been marginalized in the country. History has shown, that people tend to accept the law and reject the illegal.

The Igualitos Foundation promotes the inclusion of the LGBTI population to the central institution of Western societies: civil marriage.

The concept of family has in its essence an important and strong core that is the engine of all acting (or should be): LOVE. Love is a force that includes, not excludes. It is a force that tolerates, not imposes. It is a force that draws near, not distances. When love is present, the rules remain. We are all the same. We all have virtues. We all have flaws and we all have the same rights. In the Igualitos Foundation, we are fighting to make sure, that the promise that all men are created equal, becomes a reality in every state in Latin America.

  Herman M. Duarte   Founder and President   Igualitos Foundation

Herman M. Duarte

Founder and President

Igualitos Foundation

 
 

OBJECTIVES OF THE FOUNDATION

 

 
 
 
  • Achieve equal access to the civil institutions offered by States in the Latin American region to regulate relationships.

  • Promote strategic litigation actions to achieve equal marriage in Latin America.

  • Coordinate legal, academic, political, national or international efforts to achieve the goals of equal marriage.

 


 
  • Generate and manage favorable public spaces to achieve progress in achieving the Rights of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and intersex (LGBTI) population.

  • Develop and create spaces, conferences, conventions to discuss, debate and promote the rights of LGBTI people, in particular actions relating to equal marriage.

 


 
  • Conduct technical studies and academic research on the rights of LGBTI persons, in particular on egalitarian marriage, violence, social exclusion as well as aspects related to gender identity and sexual orientation.

  • Any other action aimed at promoting a greater level of inclusion in Latin American societies of LGBTI persons.

  • Create strategic alliances that promote the aims of the Foundation,

 


Herman Duarte- founder  

 

Herman Duarte is the founder of the Latin American Foundation for the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of the LGBTI Population - Fundación Igualitos.

He was born in San Salvador on March 1, 1988. Herman is a Salvadoran-Swiss resident in Costa Rica since 2012 and is the current president of the Foundation.

He was educated under the Catholic faith and did his primary and secondary studies in El Salvador at the Lamatepec School (Opus Dei catholic only boys school). At the age of 16, he began studying law at the Escuela Superior de Economía y Negocios, where he obtained a degree in legal sciences (Juris Doctor equivalent). In 2010, at the age of 22, he left for the University of Stockholm where he completed a master's degree in International Commercial Arbitration.

On October 18, 2010, in the spring of Sweden, Herman "came out" through his blog, reaching more than 50 thousand visits. The impact was so great, that google auto - completed the search of Herman Duarte with "Herman Duarte Blog Gay". This marked his fate, since on returning to San Salvador, he felt the weight of being part of the LGBTI minority: The law firms had the doors shut for him.

Between 2011 and mid-2012, he founded his first office "HDUARTE-Abogacía" and was supported by the Salvadoran designer Abdias Murillo (RIP) for the brand design of the firm; Despite the quality product, failed to position itself in the market and had to make difficult but necessary decisions to get ahead as a professional. During this period, he tried to form an NGO to fight for the LGBTI minorities but the attempt was not made concrete.

 

"Without experience nothing will be worth my master's degree" was the mantra that was repeated so it sent more than 300 applications until it came into the hands of Mariano Batalla, of Batalla Abogados, Costa Rica's leading dispute resolution firm Chambers & Partners. In this office, it was where Herman deepened his activism by the LGBTI minorities, first from columns of opinion presented in La Prensa Gráfica and El Diario de Hoy and followed by means of the strategic litigation "putting at the service of the LGBTI movement his abilities of lawyer Specialist in complex litigation ".

On November 11, 2016, Herman filed a claim of unconstitutionality against certain provisions of the Family Code that prohibit and prevent access to civil marriage for persons of the same sex. In response to this action, the parliamentary group ARENA promoted a constitutional reform to sabotage "the equal marriage claim". Before this, Herman responded with an extension of the claim, requesting an urgent precautionary measure against the Legislative Assembly. The media coverage of these incidents were significant, as a result of which, it managed to coordinate support of the solidarity voices and founded the "Igualitos" movement, which to date has evolved in the Latin American Foundation for the Promotion and Protection of The rights of the LGBTI Population - Igualitos Foundation.

Activism in favor of the LGBTI minorities gradually absorbed his time, therefore in April, thanks to the support of the partners of the firm Batalla Salto Luna, he founded the firm signature HDUARTE-LEX, specialist in Arbitration and Human Rights, which has financed the Igualitos movement until today that has been transformed into a Foundation. 

I am grateful for having the opportunity to be the voice of those who don´t have one. In this journey I want to give a very special thanks to André Solórzano, Cruz Torres, Mario R. and Alejandro Quinteros for walking with me in the beggining of my journey for equality.
— Herman Duarte, founder and president of Igualitos Foundation
 
 

For Donations and general inquiries

LA@FundacionIgualitos.org

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