LGBTIQ+ Justice: The TransLives Project

Cristosal invites you to imagine a world in which all LGBTIQ+ people not only survive but flourish. We believe this world is possible. For human rights defenders, especially transgender and non-binary people, this requires access to justice in hate crimes and access to opportunities as professionals with the skill and experience needed to defend LGBTIQ+ rights.  

Crimes against transgender people regularly go uninvestigated and unprosecuted in the northern of Central America. Cristosal’s strategic litigation program and criminal investigation unit puts our tools to work within the criminal justice system to end this impunity. We partner with LGBTIQ+ organizations to build cases against perpetrators of hate crimes and we challenge the complacent legal systems to do their job.

We also recognize the need to develop highly skilled professionals to continue this work. But, due to prejudice, the barriers to higher education and job opportunities are often insurmountable for transgender and non-binary people who seek to defend human rights in Central America. 

Cristosal is committed to building a team of professionals that is inclusive, diverse, and rooted in the communities we serve.

That is why in 2021 Cristosal launched a one-of-a-kind professional internship program for transgender and non-binary human rights advocates. The interns work alongside our team of internationally recognized human rights defenders from Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador. Our teams are stronger and more committed than ever to defending LGBTIQ+ rights when we do it together.

How to Support Translives

Your financial support for Cristosal’s TransLives Project makes you part of a gender diverse transnational team standing with trans, non-binary and LGBTIQ+ individuals and communities in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador in the face of wave after wave of brutal killings and targeted violence.

Together we can:

  • Partner with LGBTIQ+ community organizations to identify and accompany victims of targeted violence
  • Employ cutting-edge forensic techniques to gather evidence 
  • Provide legal representation for victims and survivors to seek justice 
  • Amplify the voices of trans people through creative communications on social and traditional media platforms
  • Build a gender diverse pipeline of human rights professionals in northern Central America

Victims, survivors and investigators particularly need your support to allow for safe travel between the often remote and insecure areas where hate crimes occur and the capital cities where Cristosal’s offices and the offices of governmental and international human rights authorities are located.

It was an important moment for me when I could deliver humanitarian aid with my colleagues and see firsthand that people feel this is a real life opportunity. I saw their gratitude and how this sparked a dream to have a place to live in peace that is not the street, to see a future with this help, to start their business, or to have their children with them. Listening to their stories and knowing that you are doing your bit for them. Being able to be the one to give the opportunity of a better life to a friend/sibling from the LGBTIQ+ community has been the most important thing for me. - Gabriel, Cristosal intern.

Did you miss it?

Watch our Field Notes: Lessons from the LGBTIQ+ Community in Central America on Human Rights and Access to Justice here:

Cristosal is committed to being inclusive, which means learning from and with the people they serve.

Watch the Field Notes event where we listened, learned and engaged with Cristosal’s Interns and other Trans and Non-Binary activists to understand the importance of providing spaces and paths of safety so all people can live in the wholeness of their identity. We also discussed expectations for the international community and what advocacy could look like.