OutBuro lgbt professional entreprenuer networking online community gay lesbian transgender queer bisexual nonbinary

DKT International and The Pleasure Project Launch 12 Global Fellows to Advocate for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights

WASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The Pleasure Project is pleased to announce the launch of the ‘Pleasure Fellow Scheme.’ Chosen from countries around the world, the 12 Pleasure Fellows will advocate for sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) and provide expert and diverse outlooks on pleasure which account for different cultures, societies, and geographies. The Fellows hone their skills as pleasure advocates during a series of pleasure training seminars. Once completed, each Fellow receives funding sponsored by The Case for Her, Misscheifs and DKT International to carry out their pleasure-positive missions as newly mentored pleasure champions.

“Did your sex education mention the real reason people have sex? Did it get you ready for your sex/relationship life? The most common answer to these questions globally is no. For too long sex education has focused on all the terrible things that might happen to you after sex, like death, danger and disease. However, people are more likely to trust important sexual health information if we also acknowledge the truth: sex can feel good,” says Anne Philpott, founder and CEO of The Pleasure Project. “In 2004, I noticed a complete absence of pleasure in conversations around sexual and reproductive health, so out of frustration I started The Pleasure Project, advocating for a pleasure-positive approach. We’re confident our 12 Pleasure Fellows will make desire and wellbeing central to sex and sexual & reproductive health conversations by creatively spreading the message that pleasure is key throughout the ten countries they hail from – including Chile, the Philippines, and Kenya, to name a few. At the Pleasure Project, we are committed to putting the sexy back into safer sex.”

Given DKT International’s history with controversial, pleasure-positive mass media campaigns, like the 2013 DKT Pakistan Josh Condom advertisement, the global organization welcomed the opportunity to support the ‘Pleasure Fellow Program’ and hosted a session with the Fellows on how to overcome controversy. Both DKT and The Pleasure Project share the belief that pleasurable sex is a human right vs. fear and over-medicalization of sexual health and wellness. In addition, evidence proves that talking about pleasure also allows people to make safer choices in their sex lives and choose what to say yes or no to. In keeping with the World Association for Sexual Health’s recent 2021 declaration, sexual pleasure is a central part of the human experience and personal well-being and should exist free from discrimination, coercion, and violence.

“DKT is proud to partner with The Pleasure Project in this exciting and important work,” says Chris Purdy, CEO of DKT International. “To have effective conversations around contraception and safe sex, we must talk with consumers about why they have sex in the first place. No one ever called their partner on Sunday morning to ask about ‘how their reproductive health life was last night.’ The Pleasure Fellows will help remind the reproductive health community about this truth.”

Ultimately, the Pleasure Fellows will bring 12 new global voices and perspectives to a pleasure-positive approach, building upon the growing pleasure wave. For more information, watch the 12 Fellows in action on The Pleasure Project website here: https://thepleasureproject.org/pleasure-fellows/

About DKT International:

Since 1989, DKT International’s core mission has been to provide safe and affordable options for family planning and HIV prevention through social marketing in underserved countries throughout Latin America, Africa, and Asia.

About The Pleasure Project:

The Pleasure Project is the leading global voice on pleasure based sexual health. Since 2004, The Pleasure Project ‘puts the sexy into safer sex, because sex education is rarely sexy and erotica rarely safe’, with the aim of getting sex educators comfortable talking about all aspects of sexual health and to embrace desire, joy, happiness, and pleasure when it comes to sex education.

The Pleasure Project has just been awarded the World Association for Sexual Health Award for Excellence and Innovation in Sexuality Education 2021.

Pleasure Based Sexual Health Definition

A pleasure-based approach is one that celebrates sex, sexuality and the joy and wellbeing that can be derived from these, and creates a vision of good sex built on sexual rights. It focuses on sensory, mental, physical and sensual pleasure to enable individuals to understand, consent to, and gain control over their own bodies and multi-faceted desires. Well-being, safety, pleasure, desire and joy are the objectives of a programme with a pleasure-based approach. This approach measures empowerment, agency, and self-efficacy by whether or not an individual has been enabled to know what they want, and can ask for it, and request this of others, in relation to their sexuality, desires and pleasure.


Jaimie Weiner


Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights and Red Lésbica Cattrachas Win Historic Trans Rights Case

The ruling by the Inter-American Court not only holds Honduras accountable for the murder of trans activist Vicky Hernández, it also establishes sweeping new protections for LGBTQ+ people across Latin America

WASHINGTON, June 28, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights and Red Lésbica Cattrachas have won a historic case before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights setting sweeping new protections for trans people across Latin America.

Today, June 28, 2021, marks 12 long years since the death of Vicky Hernández, a young Honduran trans woman who was targeted and killed by her own government during the country's coup d'etat.In all that time, local authorities have failed to provide Vicky’s family with a proper investigation into her murder and the threat of anti-LGBTQ+ violence has gone unabated, to the point that Honduras is now the most dangerous place for trans and other gender diverse people in the world.
Today, June 28, 2021, marks 12 long years since the death of Vicky Hernández, a young Honduran trans woman who was targeted and killed by her own government during the country’s coup d’etat. In all that time, local authorities have failed to provide Vicky’s family with a proper investigation into her murder and the threat of anti-LGBTQ+ violence has gone unabated, to the point that Honduras is now the most dangerous place for trans and other gender diverse people in the world.

The case was the first before the Court involving the death of a trans woman, activist Vicky Hernández, who was shot and killed by Honduran security forces during the country’s coup d’état in June 2009. The Court not only ruled that the Honduran government had discriminated against Vicky because of her gender identity, failing to properly investigate and prosecute her case for years, but that it was ultimately responsible for her state-sanctioned murder.

As part of its ruling, issued on the 12-year anniversary of Vicky’s death, the Court has ordered reparations for Vicky’s family, including financial support, and has mandated the State to not only restart its investigation into her murder but to publicly acknowledge its role in her death. The State will also be forced to adopt measures to allow people to update their gender in identity documents and public records, an enormous step forward in protecting LGBTQ+ rights; to establish the “Vicky Hernández” educational scholarship for trans women in her honor; and train security forces on the prejudice-based violence experienced by LGBTQ+ people.

The Court specified that at the moment of Vicky’s death there was “a context of violence, arbitrary detentions, murders and discrimination against LGBTI persons, and in particular against trans women who were sex workers.” Moreover, it recognized that “in many cases, it was members of the public forces who perpetrated this violence.” As a result, the Court ordered the collection of “comprehensive information on the violence suffered by LGBTI persons in order to assess the real magnitude of this phenomenon and, accordingly, design strategies to prevent and eradicate new acts of violence and discrimination.”

The Court’s orders are an important first step toward tackling the structural causes of violence against the LGBTQ+ community and importantly address the longstanding culture of impunity that has allowed perpetrators of human rights violations, including Vicky’s attackers, to avoid justice.

“We’re grateful to the Court and to our partners at Cattrachas for allowing justice to prevail today,” said Angelita Baeyens, vice president of international advocacy and litigation for Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights. “The decision is based on the fundamental principle that nobody should be discriminated against for determining for themselves who they are and how they identify in the most essential aspects of their being. That such a foundational principle is reaffirmed by the Court on the anniversary of Vicky’s death makes it part of her legacy to us all.”

“The judgment of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in this case sheds light on structural violence in Honduras, which over the years has been strengthened by acts of discrimination against LGTTBI people, including in the justice system,” said Indyra Mendoza, founder of Red Lésbica Cattrachas. “This structural violence has been supported by fundamentalist religious narratives, the media, and the discrimination against sexually diverse people in the political, workplace, and social spheres and has translated into their exclusion and death. Honduras must change. The Americas must change. Justice for Vicky is justice for everyone.”

Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights
We are a nonpartisan, not-for-profit organization that has worked to realize Robert F. Kennedy’s dream of a more just and peaceful world since 1968. In partnership with local activists, we advocate for key human rights issues—championing changemakers and pursuing strategic litigation at home and around the world. And to ensure change that lasts, we foster a social-good approach to business and investment and educate millions of students about human rights and social justice.

Red Lésbica Cattrachas
Cattrachas is a feminist lesbian organization dedicated to defending the Human Rights of LGBTI people in Honduras. It was founded in 2000 as a response to the context of violence against diverse sex-gender persons.

SOURCE Robert F. Kennedy Human Rightsmt

CONTACT: Minhee Cho, Media Relations Manager, RFK Human Rights, mcho@rfkhumanrights.org

Related Links


Tunisia: UN expert praises democratic progress since Revolution, says more needed for LGBT persons

GENEVA, 18 June 2021 / PRN Africa / — A UN human rights expert today acknowledged the steps taken by Tunisia since the Revolution just over 10 years ago to advance equality and non-discrimination, and urged the government to amend legislation to fully protect the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) people.

At the end of his visit to the country, the UN Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, Victor Madrigal-Borloz, said State action is needed to ensure that the national legislation is fully compliant with constitutional principles and international human rights law.

“The democratic path that Tunisia has embarked on and its regional leadership in human rights demonstrate that issues considered sensitive can be diligently addressed within a human rights-based approach,” he said at the end of a 10-day visit to Tunis, Sousse and Sfax.

“There however seems to be a tacit social agreement to ask people with non-normative sexual orientations or gender identities to hide their true nature. This arrangement may be convenient for some sectors of society, but it is not in the best interests of society and not acceptable under international human rights law,” he said. “Social mores and the impact of religious thought in implementing them should not be obstacles to the recognition of human rights for the whole of society, including LGBT persons.”

Madrigal-Borloz noted the particular challenge of the use of criminal law to unduly persecute non-normative sexual orientations and gender identities, which is at the root of endemic discrimination, and acts of physical and psychological violence that impede access to justice for LGBT people and lead to their exclusion from the health, education, employment and housing sectors.

He said the impact of criminalization on the enjoyment of the rights of LGBT people in Tunisia, and the invisible mechanisms of social exclusion continue to lead to their marginalization. “I am convinced that there is an urgent need to raise awareness of sexual and gender diversity as inherent features of human nature that must be respected to enable LGBT persons to live with dignity and to fully enjoy their human rights,” Madrigal-Borloz said. In particular, he urged the Tunisian State to immediately halt the practice of anal tests, a form of torture, which is condemned by eminent Tunisian scholars and practitioners and global human rights bodies alike.

The expert met with State officials, members of civil society and several LGBT people who shared experiences and life stories with him.

“I congratulate Tunisia for its determination and openness to dialogue and I welcome the determination shown by the State to respect the spirit of the Revolution and to guarantee the dignity and freedom of all, including LGBT persons,” the UN expert said.

“I place a lot of hope in the democratic projects underway, in particular the harmonisation of legislation with the Constitution and international human rights treaties.”

SOURCE United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)