With special thanks to the featured asylum seekers and refugees Mari, Cheyenne, Junior and Subhi, for having the courage and fortitude to tell your stories before you had barely landed! Dear Friends, This week I had the great honor of accepting the OUTFEST Los Angeles 2019 juried Best Feature Documentary award for the Film UNSETTLED … More Tom Shepard’s UNSETTLED Wins Prestigious OUTFEST, Los Angeles Award
7 MASKS 1 STORY – This is MASK 07 out of 7 MASK stories which will be told each day this week: If you care you will share! If you have been following the series and already read this intro, you can skip to the header MASK 07, below: For the past ten years I have … More MASK 07: LGBTI Refugee: I lost my Soul in Kakuma Camp Kenya
A Critical frontier for Human Rights Advocacy – Melanie Nathan (2019) – the subject of 2 Articles in global press- Harpers and Mamba-Online – elucidating a critical mess for LGBTQI refugees! This week two articles have been written by accomplished journalists at two different corners of the world, reflecting on the stories of refugees attempting to avail … More Hostile Host Countries further the persecution of LGBTI Refugees in Africa
Today is International Women’s Day #IWD2019: We celebrate and stand in solidarity with all women, noting their tenacity and fortitude, especially those who courageously survive violence and defy patriarchy. At African HRC with global lesbians and transgender women our family, we continue to fight for the basic human right to autonomy of mind and body. Here … More Honoring Lesbian Survivors on International Women’s Day #IWD 2019
For the past several years I have been communicating and working directly with LGBTI refugees Kenya- both in Nairobi and Kakuma Camp. I have advocated for the community as a whole and on an ad hoc basis for individuals, balancing the refugee reports of insecurity and failed protection against working with UNHCR staff to find … More Injured Ugandan Refugee Evacuated from Kakuma Exposes Threat by RAS Officer
Kenya is a hostile host to LGBTI refugees:– Thirty LGBTI Refugees in Kakuma Camp, Kenya, mostly Ugandans participating in an approved peaceful demonstration, tried to deliver a document to UNHCR, but after being refused entry into the compound were viciously attacked by police. I have reached out to UNHCR for comment and will update accordingly. The conditions … More LGBT Refugee Peaceful Protest Turns Violent at UNHCR Compound in Kenya
The Botswana High Court has announced that it will finally hear a case on the decriminalization of homosexuality next year: According to our friends at Mamba Online, the full bench of the court ordered that a hearing challenging the constitutionality of sections 164(a), 164(c) and 167 of the Penal Code, which criminalizes same-sex sexual activities … More Botswana Africa’s Next Hope for Decriminalization of Homosexuality
Cameroon’s Anglophone crisis has turned into a full-scale propaganda war. The return of 78 kidnapped schoolchildren this week has led to an exchange of allegations between Cameroon’s government and Anglophone militant separatists claiming the other side was responsible, reports Amindeh Blaise Atabong from Yaoundé. Meanwhile, TV journalist Mimi Mefo Takombo has been detained indefinitely by … More Africa Brief – Tanzanian Gay Hunt, Cameroon Turmoil, Expat Somalis Win U.S. Elections and More…..
The fourth edition is here- of the Quartz Africa Innovators, an annual series identifying some of the most ambitious and imaginative minds on the African continent. The 30 movers and thinkers on this list range across fields from the arts and science to technology and entrepreneurship and beyond. In congratulating all, I recommend reading the details and … More Africa 2018 List of Top Innovators by Quartz
Mo Ibrahim called internet shutdowns “a crime” that shouldn’t be tolerated. Authoritarian governments, despots and dictators stand to benefit from restricting social media and making it unaffordable! The trend to tax social media and clamp down on internet use is quietly spreading across African countries and they seem to be influencing each other. Ugandans may want … More African Despots Benefit from Taxing and Restricting Social Media
American Family Watch International (FWI) Misuses its UN Status to Preach Abstinence Trying to Stop Sex Education under the Guise of Sexualization of Children. United States rightwing forces, helmed by Family Watch International and its President Sharon Slater, are exerting their colonialist muscle to prevent and inhibit sex education to Africa’s youth. The ignorant propagandist … More American Sharon Slater Trying to Stop Sex Education in Africa
Filippo Grandi stresses the need to support those forced to flee because of their sexual orientation and gender identity | However, the UNHCR office in Uganda has refused to help L:GBTI Refugees! The Chief of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Filippo Grandi, called for solidarity with LGBTI people who are forced to flee … More UNHCR Chief’s Call for Solidarity with Displaced LGBTI and Refugees is Not enough
Cameroon is not an ideal place for journalists to thrive in, due to laws that constantly threaten their freedom and independence, a recent report by a media rights group has said. Imagine that! The 2018 Press Freedom Index released by Reporters Without Borders said Cameroonian authorities have imposed a climate of fear and self-censorship on … More Some News Americans May Not Be Interested In
Our responsibility as American LGBTQI on the global front is to first and foremost follow the lead and direction of the Ghanaian gay community … In writing this response to “EDITORIAL: Sac State shouldn’t break bread with repressive leaders – Persecution of LGBTQ, …….”, and the Article of Claire Morgan, Managing editor, published in the online Sacramento State student … More Why Sacramento State LGBTQI Community Should Welcome the President of Ghana
Congratulations to the 20 Fellows chosen out of 20,000 applicants. When the Obama Foundation opened applications for the inaugural Obama Foundation Fellowship,2018, over 20,000 people from 191 countries applied. From that incredible pool, they selected 20 inaugural Fellows who represent 11 countries around the world. Welcome to the Fellows: Erin Barnes, Veronica Crespin-Palmer, Clarissa Delgado, … More Meet the Obama Foundation’s First Group of Fellows
President Trump’s “shithole” comment on immigrants from unspecified countries in Africa, as well as those from Haiti and El Salvador, is reflected in the numbers. In the year after Trump took office, US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has reported a drop in total number of overall “removals”—except for African migrants who have seen a … More When it Comes to the Trump Shithole Comment The Proof of the Pudding is in the Eating!
The pleas for help continue to pour in from countries around the world, where people are attacked for being gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender (LGBT). These are usually people who have been shunned by family, friends and government, alike, with nowhere to turn. While you may feel that there is nothing you can do to … More Gay Man in Stabbing Attack Stuck without Status
Not only does Donald Trump’s insults to African countries reflect his racism, but also smacks of his own ignorance. I am sorry to note that many Americans display such ignorance. I was not educated in the American school system, and have witnessed the education my two daughters are receiving compared to my own school experience … More Learning About The Shitholes
… even though for reasons having little to do with his homophobia – but at least there is hope for a future administration that would now be more likely to embrace equality like its neighboring South Africa” Melanie Nathan, African HRC. Like many Africans I am so happy to see Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe ditched by his … More Zimbabwe Ditches Homophobic Mugabe
Here is what the BBC Reports today (And I have chosen the BBC report to make my point for good reason): “US President Donald Trump will allow refugee admissions to the US to resume while announcing stricter rules for vetting applicants, US media report. It comes as the 120-day ban on refugees expires on Tuesday. … More Trump Admin Failing LGBTI Refugees Bound for U.S.A.
We are receiving reports that the Trump administration will institute travel restrictions for approximately ten countries by Sunday, when the travel ban for six majority Muslim countries is set to expire. These reports come as the Supreme Court prepares to hear oral arguments in the Muslim and refugee ban case in a few weeks. This travel ban is … More Trumps Muslim Ban To Be Renewed to 10 Countries
By Melanie Nathan, July 24, 2017. The importance in showcasing love stories and the relationship evolution to marriage, illustrating how couples avail themselves of tradition and of the laws that equally pertain to all, is critical to an LGBT movement in Africa- where homophobia is rampant through the lies that have perpetuated misunderstanding. This outward … More Critical Truth in Telling Gay Love Stories of Africa
By Melanie Nathan, Executive Director African Human Rights Coalition. Or Mere Incompetence of the Trump Administration In my capacity as the Executive Director of the African Human Rights Coalition, I advocate on behalf of LGBTI refugees in Africa. Since Donald Trump took office the program has been anything BUT smooth sailing! When Trump took office … More Is Trump Purposely Defying Travel and Refugee Court Orders
Africa is alive and well and the news is plentiful. Here is a summary of a fraction of the reporting from the vast continent and its 54 countries – and some select details , as well as a link to a column – “Why is Science Fiction White?” F A M I N E – 20 million … More Americans You May Have Missed this News from Africa
Below is the Statement at African Human Rights Coalition on Trump’s new anti Refugee Order and Muslim Ban. I am noticing that few to none news outlets are speaking out about the impact of the Trump Executive Order on LGBTI refugees – calling it ONLY a Muslim Ban. We speak out against the Muslim Ban as well as … More African HRC Issues Press Statement as Trump ‘s Anti Refugee Order Hurts LGBTI Refugees
Quoting the NBC Article by Julie Compton: African LGBTQ refugees hoping to come to the United States got the news they had hoped for Thursday night — they would not have to remain in countries where they face persecution or even death. The news came after a three-judge federal appeals court panel refused to reinstate President … More Court Decision Allows LGBTQ Refugees to Continue Entering U.S.
The following from African HRC: With a cruel stroke of his pen, Donald Trump on Friday suspended the U.S. refugee program. This has stopped the admission of all refugees to the United States for four months, causing uncertainty and terror for the refugees who had already spent years being vetted for resettlement and who had finally … More LGBTI Refugees Hurt by Trump Ban
While leading a 1993 United Nations peacekeeping mission in Rwanda, Dellaire became convinced that large-scale ethnic violence was imminent. He warned his superiors and pleaded for additional troops and ammunition, but instead, the U.N. ordered him to withdraw. Dellaire believed that leaving would be immoral, and he stayed in Rwanda with around 500 troops (from the original 2,600) to protect as many people as they could. That decision is credited with saving more than 30,000 lives. Roméo Dallaire will Receive Honorary Doctorate at event which is open to the public
… More U.N. Commander Who Tried to Stop Rwanda’s Genocide to Speak AT USF
By Melanie Nathan, December 24, 2015. #THANKSfortheLOVE #Heartbreaking I am very very touched by the outpouring of holiday love from the LGBTI refugees who are in contact with me and many who have not previously been in contact with me- from many parts of Africa. I had no idea that many people knew about our … More Xmas Love from LGBTI Refugees in Africa
By Melanie Nathan, December 22, 2015. Who has hurt African LGBT people more? Is that the question? Ask yourself always – where did it start and unless one fails to place a story in its absolute and full context, then we can be assured there is no truth. The New York Times published a somewhat … More New York Times Sparks Breitbart Article Scapegoating against LGBT Human Rights Advocacy