Armario Abierto was founded in 2011 and its mission is to promote initiatives that seek to contribute to the construction of fairer living conditions and support the guarantee of lives free of violence for women who assume gender identities and / or exercise dissident sexualities. They focus their actions especially on trans women who, due to the conditions in which they carry out sex work, find themselves in situations of vulnerability.
In 2011, Armario Abierto organized in Manizales the first march to commemorate the Stonewall riots and, during the following four years, it was the same LGBTIQ population who planned and executed the mobilization. However, as the system is characterised by having the capacity to capture the resistances, the City Hall decided to institutionalise the march. During the last years, social organizations have tried, in various ways, to influence the planning of the march co-opted by the State, but the efforts have been in vain because of limited conditions and the very conservative context in which we live. Resultantly, this year, Armario Abierto has proposed two other sexual, social and gender dissenting organizations that exist in Manizales, to create a Dissenting State Block for the march of pride, in order to position, from a artistic-cultural bet, their voice of protest against the systematic abuses of the State against LGBTIQ, specifically converging on the rejection of:
- The police harassment against trans women
- The lack of real guarantees for trans women to have access to education, health and work in decent conditions
- Government contracting of people who have no training in sexual and gender diversity to carry out activities with lesbians, gays, bisexuals, trans and intersex.
- The utilitarian treatment that the State gives to the LGBTI population, taking advantage of our needs to present innocuous results, without generating long-term processes that effectively affect the improvement of our quality of life
- Impunity in the face of LGBTI murders
“We call the block as: KU-KOS KLAN because the State has carried out genocidal practices against us, at the same time that it has propitiated the conditions for the realization of the extermination under the so-called “social cleansing”. And, as the Ku Kux Klan also perpetrated crimes against homosexuals in the genocide, we decided to subvert its name to warn about the systematic violence, since we propose it to be an antifascist, anti-patriarchal, anti-racist and anti-capitalist bloc, positioning ourselves politically as a diverse, colorful, and endurance alternative,” they say.
You can see some of the groups’ mobilisation videos here.