Transgender women use Facebook to lobby UN

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By KAH for APCNews

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina, 08 November 2010

Cero en Conducta (Conduct 0) is an organisation of lesbians, bisexual and trans women based in Santiago del Estero, a rural, conservative Catholic province in the north of Argentina. After the first Argentinian Feminist Tech Exchange in November 2009, Maria Rocha set up a Facebook profile for Primorosa Preciosura – the group’s “safe house” for sexual diversity— as an experiment. She didn´t really know what the benefits might be but wanted to try out some of the skills she had learned at the workshop.

Several months later, Cero en Conducta was contacted through Facebook by IGLHRC, the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission The contact which started as an informal exchange led to Cero en Conducta being invited to produce a shadow report on human rights violations against LGBQTI people in the north-west of Argentina for the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and an invitation to present the research in New York.

It is the first time that trans people have been mentioned in concluding observations by CEDAW, Maria told APCNews.

“Facebook has solved a lot of problems for us,” said Maria at the second FTX in Buenos Aires ten months later and recounted how Cero en Conducta used Facebook to make contacts with and receive multiple inputs from lesbian and trans groups in the other northern provinces during the compilation of the shadow report.

The FTX is part of the APC women’s programme’s Take Back the Tech! to end violence against women project which is funded by the Dutch MDG3 Fund and is being carried out in twelve countries worldwide.

Photo by “gaelx”:http://www.flickr.com/photos/gaelx/2640409818/

(END/2010)

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