KAMPALA, UGANDA – “None of us will be truly developed when some of us are left behind.”
This is according to Michael David C. Tan, publishing editor of Outrage Magazine, who participated in the inaugural Solutions Summit of the Community Solutions Program (CSP), which gathered former fellows of CSP to address community level violence.
CSP is a program of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the United States Department of State, and is implemented by IREX
For Tan, development efforts need to be inclusive. And – particular to the LGBTQIA community – “this starts with seeing us; and then including us in existing development efforts.”
For Tan, and for instance, “those who have projects that deal with the workforce need to recognize that LGBTQIA people may not be hired, not promoted or can be unfairly terminated not because of their lack of qualifications or their incompetence but solely because of the their SOGIE.” For those with programs that focus on family cohesion, “acknowledge that some family members discriminate against LGBTQIA family members.” And for those with programs addressing access to education, “there is also that need to know and then address how some institutions actually ban LGBTQIA people from going to school because of their SOGIE.”
“Our being LGBTQI becomes another layer of our oppression,” Tan said, “and part of this is because the implementation of mainstream efforts continues to neglect sexual minorities.”
In the end, “it starts with seeing us; with including LGBTQIA people in programs. That is the challenge to all development efforts. Otherwise, talks of inclusion is just that: talks.”