Special Section on Sexual Minorities and HIV/AIDS

  • Post category:Projects

Please note that LGB asylum differs from asylum for trans people. Successful trans asylum cases are few and rely not on gender identity as much as perceived sexual orientation. Indeed, being trans has not yet been recognized as a ground for asylum.

Reports on General Conditions and LGBTQ Community in Haiti

Media Coverage

Amnesty Report: Haiti 2017/2018,” Amnesty International, 2018

Why it’s gotten harder for LGBT people in Haiti since the earthquake,” by Amy Bracken, PRI, February 6, 2018

Freedom in the World 2018: Haiti Profile,” Freedom House, 2018 (notes LGBT freedom decline)

Gay family defies odds in Haiti,” by Staff, Reuters, December 7, 2017

Haiti’s LGBT rights groups find their feet amid a rising tide of animosity,” by The Editors, World Politics Review, September 12, 2017

Le Sénat haïtien cible les homosexuels,” par Agnès Gruda, La Presse, 09 août 2017 [English translation: Haitian Senate Targets Homosexuals Article Translation]

Les sept articles qui condamnent les homosexuels,” par Réginald Calixte, Le National, August 3, 2017

Haiti Senate votes to ban gay marriage,” Agence France Press republished by Indian Express, August 3, 2017

Haïti: le sénat interdit le mariage gay,” Le Figaro, 2 août 2017

Les sénateurs mettent les bâtons dans les roues des homosexuels,” par Juno Jean Baptiste, Le Nouvelliste, 1 août 2017

Haiti Senate Bill Discriminates Against LGBTQ Community, Human Rights Org Says,” Haitian Times, July 28, 2017

Quand les sénateurs parlent du mariage pour tous,” par Juno Jean Baptiste, Le Nouvelliste, 7 juillet 2017

Des homosexuels haïtiens réclament leurs droits,” par Amos Cincir, Le Nouvelliste, 5 mai, 2017

Haïti: les Homosexuels face aux Barrières Culturelles, Religieuses et Légales!” par Luckson Saint-Vil, MINUSTAH, 14 décembre 2016 [English translation: Haiti- Gays Face Cultural, Religious, and Legal Barriers Translation]

Finding a home in the Bronx after fleeing anti-gay violence in Haiti,” by Emily Palmer, New York Times, December 1, 2016

Un projet de loi pour réprimer les droits LGBT en Haïti” par Josianne Dejardins, Ricochet, 28 octobre, 2016

LGBT festival canceled in Haiti amid threats to OrganizersAssociated Press, September 27, 2016

Homos en Haïti, une lutte sans merci” par Delphine Bauer, Youpress, 2 janvier, 2016

Haiti’s Fight for Gay Rights” by Allyn Gaestel, Al Jazeera America, November 8, 2014

Haiti: Submission to the UN Human Rights Committee: 112th Session of the UN Human Rights CommitteeAmnesty International, October 7, 2014

2013 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices – HaitiUnited States Department of State, February 27, 2014

World Report 2014 – HaitiHuman Rights Watch, January 21, 2014

Haiti: Situation of sexual minorities and treatment of this group by society and the authoritiesImmigration and Refugee Board of Canada, September 27, 2013

UN organizations in Haiti deeply concerned by rise in homophobic violenceUN News Service, August 19, 2013

Haiti gangs beat 47 gays with machetes, sticks and cement blocks” by Tris Reid-Smith, Gay Star News, July 31, 2013

IACHR Condemns Recent Wave of Violence against LGTBI Persons in HaitiIACHR,July 30, 2013

Haiti Police deny reports of killing during anti-gay protest” by Jacqueline Charles, Miami Herald, July 26, 2013

Deux hommes agressés physiquement lors d’une marche homophobeHaiti-Droits Humains, July 20, 2013

Haiti: LGBTI activists at risk in HaitiAmnesty International, July 19, 2013

More Than 1,000 people in Haiti protest against legalizing same-sex MarriageAssociated Press, July 20, 2013

Des milliers de manifestants contre l’homosexualité, deux morts” par Valery Daudier et Joubert Rochefort, Le Nouvelliste 19 juillet, 2013

Haiti: Two assumed homosexuals beaten to death by protest mob” July 19, 2013

Urgent Action for LGBTI Activists at risk in Haiti“July 19, 2013

BAI Denounces Religious Leaders’ March Against Haiti’s LGBT Community” July 17, 2013

Groups Condemn Threats Against Haiti’s Gay SocietyAssociated Press, July 17, 2013

SOCIETE : L’homo hysteria gagnera-t-elle Haïti ?Haïti en Marche, 8 juillet, 2013

Safe Haven: Sheltering Displaced Persons from Sexual and Gender-Based Violence. Case Study, HaitiUN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), May 2013

Des homosexuels Haïtiens reclaimer leurs droits” par Amos Cincir, Le Nouvelliste, 5 mai, 2013

Brutal Aftershocks: The Persecution of LGBT Haitians after the Earthquake” by Mark Canavera, The Huffington Post, April 2, 2012


U.S. Court of Appeals GLBT and HIV Asylum Cases – 1996-2012

Jean-Pierre v. U.S. Attorney General – 500 F.3d1315 (11th Cir. 2007) (granted) (undisputed evidence seems to show that the petitioner likely will be singled out for crawl-space confinement, kalot marassa, and beatings with metal rods as a result of AIDS-related mental illness).

Lavira v. Attor­ney Gen­eral – (3rd Cir. Feb. 2007; remanded for further proceedings) (HIV-positive petitioner).

Law Articles

Melanie A. Conroy, Real Bias: How REAL ID’s Credibility and Corroboration Requirements Impair Sexual Minority Asylum Applicants, 24 Berkeley J. Gender L. & Just. 1 (2009) (on file).

In Re Toboso-Alfonso 20 I. & N. Dec. 819 (B.I.A 1990) was the first sexual minority-based claim: it was decided that sexual orientation is a particular social group.

The corroborative evidence requirement created by case laws and codified by the Real ID Pub. L. No. 109-13, 119 Stat. 231 (2005) is that this group is not externally visible and verifiable. The Real ID Burden of Proof (divided into sustaining burden and credibility determination) creates a disproportionate emphasis on the credibility and corroboration. Such proofs are unavailable and unreasonable to expect.

Fatma E. Marouf, The Emerging Importance of “Social Visibility” in Defining a “Particular Social Group” and Its Potential Impact on Asylum Claims Related to Sexual Orientation and Gender, 27 Yale L. & Pol’y Rev. 47(2008) (on file).

The author explains the BIA’s “social visibility” test, and then she rejects it and qualifies it as having a profound, negative impact on asylum cases related to sexual orientation and gender. On sexual-orientation related asylum claims, see in particular IV.A. The author explains that while homosexuality is well established as the basis for particular social group in the US, the “social visibility” requirement is problematic because of the social stigma associated with homosexuality. Invisibility forms part of the experience of oppression.


Immigration Equality: Information on asylum law and sexual minorities, explaining the asylum procedure. Resource includes a LGBT/HIV asylum manual with precedents.

Human Rights Watch: Section on LGBT rights that documents abuses based on sexual orientation and gender identity worldwide.

International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGHRC): General information on the rights of sexual minorities. The IGLHRC will publish a briefing paper on the impact of the earthquake on LGBT communities in early 2011.

Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (LGBTI) Resources: Fahamu Refugee Program informational page. Includes Haiti-specific section.

Fondation SEROvie: An organization that works with sexual minorities in Haiti.

Kouraj: Advocacy group for LGBT rights in Haiti.

For more information on this topic, please visit HAITI ASYLUM INFORMATION PROJECT page.