PRESIDENT EPN CONFIRMS HIS GOVERNMENT’S COMMITMENT TO ENSURING THAT ALL MEXICANS HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO BE FULFILLED AND BE HAPPY REGARDLESS OF THEIR SOCIAL STATUS, ETHNIC ORIGIN OR SEXUAL PREFERENCE.

  • This is what the government is promoting in various spheres to give all Mexicans this opportunity, he said.
  • He stressed the importance of recognizing that our society is composed of different groups that are immersed in diversity. This is a normal condition that must be accepted, where there is no room for stigma or discrimination, he said.
  • He also signed a bill to reform the Federal Civil Code to ensure same-sex marriages for persons over 18 without discrimination in line with the provisions of the General Law on the Rights of Children and Adolescents.
  • He ordered the launching of national campaigns against homophobia and instructed the issue of respect for diversity to be considered in educational syllabuses.
  • He led the commemoration of the National Day against Homophobia.

President Enrique Peña Nieto today led the commemoration of the National Day against Homophobia, in which he said that the Mexican government is determined,  “To ensure that in our country each and every Mexican, regardless of their social status, religion, sexual preference or ethnicity, has the opportunity to be fulfilled and happy.”

 “This is what the government is promoting in various spheres to give all Mexicans this opportunity, the tools and legal instruments and the mechanisms that will allow them to build a horizon and a promising, decent future, in which we will live in a society where the rights of all its members are respected,” he said, during a meeting with representatives of various civil society organizations, which, among other activities, fight homophobia.

After repeating the government’s commitment, “To open up spaces of respect for the dignity and recognition of the rights of each and every Mexican,” the president stressed the importance of “recognizing our reality and the fact that our society is composed of different groups immersed in diversity. This is a normal condition that must be accepted, in which there is no room for stigma, discrimination, or for people not to have right to be happy as a result.”

He hailed the struggle by various civil society organizations, “To seek the right to be happy and respect for diversity.”

During the event, held in the Adolfo López Mateos Hall of the official residence of Los Pinos, President Peña Nieto announced, “Four decisions that the government wishes to assume today.”

FIRST: He announced that at this same event, he would sign, for its submission to Congress, a bill to reform the first paragraph of Article 4 of the Mexican Constitution. He explained that the constitutional reform seeks to, “Clearly incorporate the criterion of the Supreme Court of Justice (SCJN) to recognize as a human right the fact that people can marry without discrimination. In other words, marriages can be entered into without discrimination due to one’s ethnic or national origin, disability, social status, health conditions, religion, gender, or sexual preference.”

This, he said, "Will establish same-sex marriage in our Constitution, as established by the Supreme Court, as has already happened in several states.” However, he said, “We cannot allow people to have rights in certain states and not in others in this country.”

SECOND: The president also signed another bill to reform, add and repeal various provisions of the Federal Civil Code. This legal proposal seeks “To ensure same-sex marriage so that it can be entered into without discrimination between persons over 18, in line with the provisions of the General Law on the Rights of Children and Adolescents.” He declared that the bill also, “Modernizes language to avoid the discriminatory expressions still contained in this Federal Code.”

It also enables consuls, in their capacity as Civil Registry judges, to issue new birth certificates to recognize gender identity.

He expressed his confidence that if this legal amendment is approved, “It will eventually be replicated in the civil codes of the different states, which do not provide for this right.”

The president also instructed the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to take the, “necessary measures to ensure that in the passport application process, birth certificates registering a sex change are acknowledged and accepted, without distinction.”

THIRD: President Peña Nieto instructed his Legal Counsel to ensure that, together with the institutions that participated in the Dialogs for Everyday Justice, they identify any other federal, state or municipal law that might imply some form of discrimination, in accordance with the criteria of the Supreme Court, “And prevent, repeal or modify them, in line with this recognition of diversity.”

Fourth. He also instructed the foreign minister to ensure that, “Mexico forms part of the United Nations Core Group on Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender or Intersex Persons, in which 19 countries from different regions participate to promote their Human Rights internationally.”

The president instructed the minister of the interior (SEGOB) and the director of the National Council to Prevent Discrimination (CONAPRED), “To ensure that together with the appropriate agencies, they analyze the various proposals that have been made here and where appropriate, take the actions needed to address them.”

Specifically, he instructed the Ministries of the Interior and Education (SEP), in conjunction with CONAPRED, to conduct national campaigns against homophobia. He also asked the Minister of Education to consider the issue of respect for diversity in the school curriculum.

He asked the Minister of Health and the IMSS director to address and respond to the different views expressed by the representatives of civil society organizations related to health care.

At the end of the event, President Peña Nieto invited the attendees to tour the facilities of the official residence of Los Pinos and to have their photograph taken on the occasion of this meeting, on the steps of Miguel Alemán's House.

FOR THE FIRST TIME IN THE HISTORY OF MEXICO, THE PRESIDENT OF MEXICO LED THE DAY AGAINST HOMOPHOBIA.

President of CONAPRED Alexandra Haas Paciuc said that this is a historic occasion since it is the first time in Mexico that a president has led an act within the framework of the National Day against Homophobia.

She said that, “For the past 26 years, various countries around the world have commemorated this date when the World Health Organization removed homosexuality from its list of diseases, which has helped expose the discrimination faced for many years, not only by homosexuals and lesbians but also by bisexual, intersex and transgender persons.

She said that this is the second year Mexico has participated in this date, “A breakthrough that was only possible to achieve in this administration thanks to the determined work of many people and many organizations” as well as the commitment of the president’s office. It is an important step, she said, because today the federal government, “In this unprecedented act, listens to those who have historically and repeatedly been made invisible on the public agenda.”

HOMOPHOBIA, LIKE AS ALL FORMS OF DISCRIMINATION, HAS NEGATIVE EFFECTS ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF NATIONS AND SOCIETIES.  It is a problem that concerns us all: ALEJANDRO BRITO

Director General of Letra S Alejandro Brito Lemus said that homophobia has devastating effects on people’s lives, and like all forms of discrimination, also has negative effects on the development of nations and societies.

Therefore, he explained, "The eradication of homophobia is a problem that concerns us all but it is up to the states to take forceful measures in that direction.” He said that, “It is pernicious behavior that not only affects a minority, as people usually think, but also the education and free development of men and women in general.”

He said that in Mexico, the various sexual and gender identities in Mexico are increasingly visible: "Gays and lesbians, bisexual men and women, transvestites, transsexuals, transgender and intersex persons have become increasingly visible, and ready and willing to exercise all the rights our Constitution recognizes and guarantees.”

He said that, “Thanks to this greater public visibility and our determination to assume ourselves as citizens with full rights, we have been able to advance this century in the expansion and recognition of rights related to sexual orientation,  identity and gender expression.”

THE GOVERNMENT AND ORGANIZATIONS CAN CONTRIBUTE TO A CULTURE OF RIGHTS THAT WILL RESULT IN AN INCLUSIVE SOCIETY: GLORIA CAREAGA

Gloria Careaga Pérez, General Coordinator of Gender Studies at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), expressed her confidence that LGBT organizations and the government together can contribute to the development of a culture of human rights that will result in an inclusive, respectful society and thus in a better country.

She declared that the LGBT movement’s advances as regards legal reforms, “Have not only been accomplished on  paper,” but have prompted those open to inclusion to develop initiatives that will advance the protection of their rights, in CENSIDA, INMUJERES, INFONAVIT, INDESOL, and even the Federal Police, and have already charted a route, which must be strengthened and continued.

ACTIONS LIKE THOSE OF today provide hope that mexico will not DENY us THE RIGHT TO BE HAPPY: ARI VERA

Ari Vera, President of “Almas Cautivas” (Captive Souls) said that the commemoration of the National Day against Homophobia and the rapprochement with the federal government, represented by President Enrique Peña Nieto, provides hope that the lives of trans men and women will begin changing as a result of actions such as this event.

This will allow a fairer state and government; a Mexico where we have access to all rights because of the simple fact of being people. Where we are not denied the opportunity of a decent job, where we are not denied decent, respectful care and where we are not denied the right to be happy.

After welcoming the president’s announcements, including the signing of two bills, he asked the president to work together with civil society organizations for the creation of public policies and government actions that will foster genuine inclusion.

I HAVE GONE FROM WALKING THE STREETS DEMANDING THE RIGHT NOT TO BE ATTACKED FOR BEING A HOMOSEXUAL TO BEING HERE TODAY ADDRESSING THESE WORDS TO THE PRESIDENT: JAIME MORALES

Jaime Morales, a theater producer and member of Familias Diversas (Diverse Families), declared that the transition in Mexico deserves celebrating. ”In the course of my adult life, I have gone from walking the streets demanding the right not to be attacked for being a homosexual, to being here addressing these words to the president of my country. And it’s exciting.”

He thanked President Enrique Peña Nieto because during his administration, a decree was issued in 2015 declaring May 17 of each year National Day against Homophobia.

He added that in terms of the recognition of human rights, the progress made by member of the LGBT community is very important, and while there are still issues to address, the improvements that have been achieved for the recognition of the rights of those who make the group of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual, transgender and intersex people, "Shows a more egalitarian Mexico with less discrimination.”

WE MUST GET TO THE POINT WHERE WE REGARD ALL THESE ISSUES RELATED TO DISCRIMINATION IN THE SAME WAY AS WE SEE LEFT-HANDEDNESS; THERE IS NO REASON TO CREATE A CONTROVERSY: LUIS PERELMAN JAVNOZON

Luis Perelman Javnozon, the founder of Armario Abierto (Open Closet) and a member of the Advisory Board of the National Council to Prevent Discrimination (CONAPRED), stated that his vision is to "get to the point where we regard these issues, like all those related to discrimination, like left-handedness, whereby although we learn that a person is left-handed, there is no reason to create a controversy.”

He said that  the importance of this event is that discriminatory attitudes and beliefs are not changed through big budgets, but by example. This is the first time that the National Day against Homophobia has been celebrated at the federal level, “It seems simple to meet at Los Pinos, but it's like turning the page to a new chapter.”

Therefore, he said today, “Has great importance and impact; hopefully it will be repeated with every Minister of State, with every governor and with every mayor in our country.”