Lesbian Visibility Week: Advancing Equality In Guatemala
Special Episode 11
The LGBTQIA+ community has come a long way in the fight for acceptance. Our voices matter and will be heard. Many of our LGBTQIA+ community members have fought for decades for the right to be seen and heard.
The attack on the Transgender community is global. There are concerted efforts to roll back LGBTQIA+ rights and the Transgender community is at the front of those attacks.
Sandra Morán Reyes (born April 29, 1960) is a Guatemalan politician who was elected to the Guatemalan Congress in the 2015 election. She is the daughter of a former president of the country. She is the first openly lesbian to be elected to the national legislature in Guatemala, and she is widely regarded as the country’s first out LGBTQIA+ person. She is a Convergence member, a new progressive party that was elected to the assembly with two other members in its first year. She has been an LGBTQIA+ and feminist activist and artist for many years, and she was the organizer of Guatemala’s first lesbian group in 1995 and the country’s first LGBTQIA+ Pride event in 1998. She had previously lived in exile in Mexico, Nicaragua, and Canada between 1981 and 1994, during which time she became a mother. She became involved in Guatemala’s human rights movement when she was fourteen years old while attending high school. She was also involved in the music industry, having been a member of the band Kin Lalat in the 1980s.
Listen in as Sandra Morán Reyes talks to us about the importance of representation and her work advancing equality as an elected official in Guatemala.
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Michelle Meow is the host and producer of “The Michelle Meow Show.” The program’s tagline is: ‘Your A-Z, covering the LGBT, LMNOP, and everyone in between.’ Michelle’s mission is to construct opportunities for people to listen in too deep conversations to develop understanding and empathy. She shares, “We simply don’t have enough opportunities to talk and not enough moments to listen.” Michelle’s show can be heard in San Francisco and nationally on the Progressive Voices Network and her local TV show can be seen on KBCW TV and Channel 44.
Michelle also produces programs at the iconic Commonwealth Club, where she has also served on their Board of Governors. There she is dedicated to conversations around social justice with an intersectional lens. She has interviewed notable thought-leaders such as Olympic medalist Adam Rippon, NFL’s first out LGBTQ coach Katie Sowers, the first American woman in space, and Sally Ride’s widow Tam O’Shaughnessy. Since 2006, Michelle has been a co-host of the San Francisco Pride Parade broadcast and she was the President of their Board of Directors from 2014 to 2018. She is a self-described LGBTQI+ history geek, information sponge, and a lover not a fighter.
Michelle shares, “Exchanging thoughtful dialogue can create change. We are all different, but in our differences, we find similarities and hope. Exchanging thoughtful dialogue can create the change we all seek in humanity.”
You can learn more about Michelle and her programming here.