“Gay Rights are Human Rights”: PFLAG Director Huckaby Brings LGBTI Advocates and Allies Together in Cape Town

Jody Huckaby, second from left, with members of Cape Town’s LGBTI advocate community
Jody Huckaby, second from left, with members of Cape Town’s LGBTI advocate community

The Executive Director of PFLAG National, Mr. Jody M. Huckaby, was in Cape Town from August 5-8 to encourage local LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex) organizations to develop advocacy networks and build ally support.

PFLAG, which stands for “Parents, Friends, and Family of Lesbians and Gays,” was founded in the United States in 1972 to promote the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons, their families and friends through support, education, and advocacy.  Over the years, it has become one of the leading human rights advocacy organizations in the U.S. with nearly 400 chapters across the country.

PFLAG organizations recently have been established in other countries and Mr. Huckaby came to South Africa to encourage the development of similar networks of support and to exchange ideas on how that can be done in the local context.

While in Cape Town, Mr. Huckaby conducted seminars, met with a cross-section of local activists and NGOs, and toured a shelter for LGBTI individuals in crisis.  He also met with members of Cape Town’s various faith communities to discover how they are supporting LGBTI members and their families.  Some of the organizations he met with include Triangle Project, Sonke Gender Justice, PASSOP, Pride Shelter Trust, Inner Circle, and I Am.  After his time in Cape Town, Mr. Huckaby traveled on to Johannesburg and Pretoria.

The U.S. Department of State is committed to advancing universal human rights for all, including the rights of LGBTI individuals.  For more information on PFLAG, please visit: www.pflag.org.