SAN JUAN – In commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, the First Lady of Puerto Rico, Beatriz Rosselló, in keeping with the Rosselló Administration’s public policy in favor of equal rights for every citizen, inaugurated the Equality Portico in Old San Juan, a permanent monument that honors the fight for LGBTT+ rights.
The 1969 Stonewall Riots marked the beginning of the fight for LGBTT+ rights in New York City and beyond.
“My husband and I have been very clear: we will not tolerate any discrimination against any individual regardless of the circumstances. Puerto Rico is open to everyone,” said First Lady Beatriz Rosselló.
Movement Advancement Project Recognizes Puerto Rico as U.S. Territory With Most Positive LGBT Policies
The Movement Advancement Project (MAP) released a report on LGBT policy in the United States territories in which it classifies Puerto Rico as the U.S. territory with the highest tally for LGBT positive policies.
According to the report, “MAP classifies various laws and policies that impact LGBT people into two broad categories: Those related to sexual orientation and those related to gender identity.” In both of these segments, Puerto Rico gets a “high” tally, meaning its laws and policies are seen as positive for the LGBT community.
Overall, Puerto Rico received a tally of 21.75, earning a spot among the 18 most progressive states.
Governor Ricardo Rosselló and First Lady Beatriz Rosselló have been strong supporters of equality and have spearheaded numerous administrative and legislative measures aimed at improving and protecting every citizens’ rights.
In 2017, Governor Rosselló created Puerto Rico’s first-ever LGBTT+ Advisory Council, which is in charge of advising the executive branch on ways to implement his administration’s policies, address the communities’ needs and to ensure LGBTT+ rights are protected.
In March of this year, Governor Rosselló banned so-called ‘conversion therapy’. At the time, he said that “the idea that there are people in our society who need treatment because of their gender identity or whom they love is not only absurd, it is harmful to so many children and young adults who deserve to be treated with dignity and respect.”
The Human Rights Campaign commended Governor Ricardo Rosselló “for his leadership in issuing this order to protect LGBTQ minors in Puerto Rico.” Since July 2018, transgender people in Puerto Rico can legally update the gender marker on birth certificates. Moreover, the LGBTT+ Advisory Council has carried out an extensive educational campaign so that public servants treat every citizen with dignity and respect.
Discover Puerto Rico, the island’s Direct Marketing Organization, is currently promoting the U.S. territory as an LGBTT+ tourist destination, highlighting the government’s commitment with the community as well as reinforcing the message that in Puerto Rico all are welcome.
“My administration, and the people of Puerto Rico, are fully committed to protecting and recognizing the rights of every citizen. We have taken concrete steps to ensure that everyone is welcomed in Puerto Rico, and every government instrumentality, especially those that offer services to citizens, are instructed to treat every citizen with dignity and respect,” the Governor said.
“We welcome the MPA report and we are proud to be the U.S. territory with the most positive LGBTT+ policies,” he added. “Our work is far from over and we will continue to fight to ensure everyone is welcome in Puerto Rico.”
“We strive for Puerto Rico to be a place where every citizen has equal opportunity on every front. Earlier this year, we passed an Equal Pay for Equal Work Act and we reformed our healthcare model to ensure everyone has access to medical services.”
“We will continue to advocate for equality through statehood for the 3.2 million U.S. citizens residing on the island,” concluded Rosselló.