“Parties' acknowledgement of LGBTQ people deepens their role building democracy.”
Julian Bedoya, Victory Institute trainee and first gay mayor in Colombia
Victory Institute and Caribe Afirmativo (Caribe) have trained 104 LGBTI leaders in Colombia, 24 of whom ran for office and four who were elected. Currently, Caribe and Victory Institute are continuing the political leadership development process with past trainees, current LGBTI elected officials, and allied elected and appointed officials in Colombia. We are engaging political parties and civil society to advocate for political inclusion in the Peace Agreement process, so it can be representative of LGBTI people. Victory Institute also released research publications on the political participation of LGBTI people in Colombia, and a guide for parties to be more inclusive of LGBTI issues.
Darla Cristina González
Victory Institute trainee and trans activist Darla Cristina González is now an appointee at the Regional Government of Nariño, Colombia. Victory Institute and Caribe organized meetings with Darla, Victory Institute trainees, openly LGBTI elected officials from Colombia, and political parties to help the parties understand the importance of engaging LGBTI people and to support the Peace Agreement process in Colombia.
Vote for Equality Campaigns were implemented during three different election cycles in 2014 and 2015. These online voter education and advocacy tools highlight how LGBTI issues are addressed by candidates running in the elections.
Training workshops for campaign staff were organized in 10 cities across Colombia in 2014, and a guide to incorporate LGBTI issues into electoral programs was published.
We trained 104 leaders on political campaign techniques in three different cities, including follow-up trainings for those that progressed in their political careers. By the end of 2016, six LGBTI people were elected, tripling the number of out LGBTI officials in Colombia.