Cuba passes ‘historic’ ban on anti-gay workplace discrimination

Over the weekend the country’s Parliament approved changes to its labor code, including protections against workplace discrimination based on gender or sexual orientation

Cuba passes ‘historic’ ban on anti-gay workplace discrimination
23 December 2013

The Caribbean island of Cuba has reportedly implemented workplace discrimination protections for its LGBTI citizens.

Blogger Andres Duque reported on his website Blabbeando Cuban blogger Francisco Rodriguez, also known as Paquito El De Cuba, tweeted in Spanish on Friday: ‘Experienced a countless number of emotions today at the Parliament. We now have the first law that protects gays, in this case in the workplace. The intense parliamentary debate left it almost certain the labor law will also ban discrimination based on gender identity. Mariela Castro proposed banning discrimination based on gender identity and obtained the support of Christian and intellectual parliamentary leaders.’

Mariela Castro, daughter of current president Raul Castro and director of the country’s leading sexual rights organization CENESEX, also reportedly proposed changing the Workplace Code to include discrimination protections based on gender identity and HIV status.

Mariela Castro as the CENESEX director has been spearheading several pro-LGBTI efforts on the island, including workplace discrimination protections, anti-homophobia demonstrations and laws for better treatment of transgender individuals.

President Raul Castro suggested a commission be put in place to review the additional suggestions.

Rodriguez, who wrote via his blog, the discrimination protection clause that was introduced in August read: ‘Every citizen able to work has the right to obtain employment… without discrimination based on skin color, gender, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, nationality or any other distinction harmful to human dignity.’

Rodriguez pointed out the success in the use of the term ‘gender’ as opposed to ‘sex’.

While many people on social networks applauded the change, some politicians and activists remain skeptical of the Cuban officials and pointed out other shortcomings.

Cuban-born Republican U.S. Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen tweeted to US media outlet The Washington Blade: ‘Don’t fall for this sham. There’s no freedom in Cuba. Mariela Castro is part of despotic regime. Don’t be duped!’

Dissident Orlando Luis Pardo also tweeted pointing out that while gender discrimination protections were implemented, language protecting different political opinion was removed.

CENESEX was unable to respond to GSN’s request for comment.
 

HAVE YOUR SAY

MORE TOP STORIES

No thumbnail available

Bisexual woman close to becoming US Congress member

Democrate Kyrsten Sinema could make history by becoming the first openly bisexual member of the U.S. House of Representatives  
No thumbnail available

Bob Jones III apologizes for saying gays should be stoned to death, 35 years ago

US evangelical leader wishes he could erase his 'reckless' statement
No thumbnail available

Burmese human rights group releases IDAHO poster

International Day Against Homophobia will be celebrated in Burma for the first time this year
No thumbnail available

Asian New Zealander says marriage equality will benefit ethnic minorities

Young gay Asian man says there is support for marriage equality among New Zealand's ethnic minorities
No thumbnail available

Navratilova wonders if Margaret Court has 'feelings for women'

Champ challenges gay marriage foe on statements that sexuality is a choice
No thumbnail available

Elton John backs Britain’s Student Pride

Elton John and David Furnish join the celebrity backers of National Student Pride, taking place this weekend in Brighton
No thumbnail available

Morehouse College to offer its first LGBT course

Next spring, Morehouse College will offer its first LGBT themed course.
No thumbnail available

Conan to perform The Simpsons ‘Monorail’ song with gay choir

Former writer of the animated sitcom will return for three nights to sing from his most famous episode Marge vs the Monorail
No thumbnail available

Malta keeps gay blood ban but prepares for same-sex weddings

A civil union bill on the Mediterranean island is likely to pass but has raised other issues, including whether gay and bi men should be automatically excluded from donating blood
No thumbnail available

Tennessee pastor stole $60,000 from church, spent it on gay dating sites

He was once caught having sex with a man in a church van