San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Gay rights groups ask for evangelical lawmaker’s resignation

The Movimiento Diversidad (Diversity Movement) is preparing a formal complaint with the Inter-American Court of Human Rights over the appointment of evangelical lawmaker Justo Orozco as president of the Legislative Assembly’s Human Rights Commission.

Marco Castillo, president of the Diversity Movement, on Monday told local Radio Reloj that they decided to refer the case to the international court, “given the impossibility of the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court to intervene in this case.”

“We are asking [the court] to intervene in the appointment of all commission members,” Castillo said. “These lawmakers do not represent minorities.”

Gay-rights groups are calling for a public protest on June 16 at 9 a.m. at the Central Park in San José, where they will ask for the removal of Orozco from the commission and for the government to become officially secular. Currently, the Costa Rican Constitution states that the country is Catholic.

The groups created a Facebook profile for the activity called “La Marcha de los Invisibles” (March of the Invisible), referring to statements by Orozco, who recently said of gay people: “I don’t recognize them; I don’t see them, so I don’t discriminate against them.”

Members of the assembly’s Human Rights Commission currently are discussing a draft of a bill on coexistence partnerships that seeks equity for same-sex couples. Orozco has openly stated that he would not support the bill.


Justo Orozco presides Human Rights Commission

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