This week, LGBTQ Victory Institute joined Brazilian partner organizations and LGBTQ elected officials in condemning a threat of physical violence against participants of a joint LGBTQ training, which took place on Friday, January 20. A PDF version of the joint letter is available here and a translated version is below:
1st Meeting of LGBT+ Representatives-Elect: Representation is power
During the historic 1st Meeting of LGBT+ Representatives-Elect, attended by 14 of the 18 LGBT+ legislators elected to the National Congress and state Legislative Assemblies, bringing together a wide range of civil society organizations, both domestic and international, one of the participating legislators, State Representative-Elect from the state of São Paulo, Thainara Faria (PT), received a threatening, racist and LGBT-phobic email that indicated that the physical integrity of the representatives-elect at our event was at risk.
The organization contacted the offices of District Representative Fábio Felix (DF-PSOL) and Federal Representative Erika Kokay (DF-PT), who then contacted DECRIN (Special Precinct for Crimes of Racial Religious, or Sexual Orientation-Based Discrimination, or Discrimination Against the Elderly or Disabled) to provide a police escort for the participants at the event.
Defense mechanisms from the Ministry for Human Rights, Citizenship Ministry and Ministry of Justice and Public Safety were also mobilized to analyze the risk level and prepare an official complaint. The event rapidly received protection from Civil and Federal Police agents.
The 1st Meeting of LGBT+ Representatives-Elect also received support in the form of a risk analysis by the NGO Justiça Global.
In addition to these institutional actions, the organization also reinforced the private security at the event, increasing the size of the team hired to provide an escort. These actions sought to ensure the physical integrity of those present.
Fascism uses terror in an attempt to paralyze and weaken our fight. They attack us because our project is powerful. At the 1st Meeting of LGBT+ Representatives-Elect, produced by VoteLGBT, in partnership with the Victory Institute and Era Fund, the majority of participants are women of color, like Representative Thainara Faria. We understand that the best response to this attack – in addition to quickly protecting the threatened representative, reinforcing the security at the event and contacting the competent authorities – is to continue with our agenda and scheduled programming.
This occurrence is a good example of how political violence works, seeking to silence our voices. Despite the sabotage of many different actors, including some in their own parties, LGBT+ candidates received more than 3.5 million votes in 2022. Traditional politics needs our voices, because we do not advocate for LGBT+ issues alone; we propose innovative public policies to fight hunger, lack of housing, discrimination and all of the evils plaguing our people.
LGBT+ political strategies will continue to flourish in all spaces, despite threats to any elected representative. Attacks will be met with investigations and accountability. United and strong, we will continue fighting for a democracy for all.
Representation is power!
The legislators and organizations present sign this letter from the event’s organizers in support of representative Thainara Faria and against racist, LGBT-phobic political violence:
- Bella Gonçalves – State Representative, MG – PSOL
- Carolina Iara, Bancada Feminista – State Representative, SP – PSOL
- Daiana Santos – Federal Representative, RS – PC do B
- Dandara – Federal Representative, MG – PT
- Dani Balbi – State Representative, RJ – PC do B
- Dra. Michelle Melo – State Representative, AC – PDT
- Duda Salabert – Federal Representative, MG – PDT
- Ediane Maria – State Representative, SP – PSOL
- Erika Hilton – Federal Representative, SP – PSOL
- Fábio Félix – District Representative, DF – PSOL
- Guilherme Cortez – State Representative, SP – PSOL
- Letícia Chagas, Movimento Pretas – State Representative, SP – PSOL
- Linda Brasil – State Representative, SE – PSOL
- A Tenda das Candidatas
- LGBTQ Victory Institute
- Caribe Afirmativo