Cuban YouTubers document LGBTI life, issues

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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SAGUA LA GRANDE, Cuba — A growing number of Cuban internet users are using YouTube to document LGBTI life and issues on the Communist island.

Nelson Julio Álvarez Mairata, who lives in Sagua la Grande, a small city on Cuba’s north central coast that is located roughly three hours east of Havana, launched his YouTube channel, Nexy J Show, in 2016.

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Cuban bars use right of admission to throw out LGBTQ people

By : Maykel González Vivero of the Washington Blade, Courtesy of the Natioan LGBT Media Association
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HAVANA — Recently private bars in Havana have used the “right of admission reserved” to keep the doors closed on LGBTI+ people. Recent incidents expose the lack of Cuban legislation to prevent discrimination and protect victims.

At midnight on July 8, while Brian Canelles and Arian Abreu were having a drink at the Efe Bar in El Vedado, Havana, they decided to take a selfie of themselves giving each other a kiss. The bouncer told them they were not allowed to take the photo and the couple was eventually kicked out because “the bar didn’t want to have a gay image.” The bouncer argued, “We’re not interested in that type of publicity, and we don’t want to get that reputation.”

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Cuba activists push for same-sex marriage

By : Michael K. Lavers of the Washington Blade, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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A torrential downpour was passing over the Cuban capital on May 11 when Violeta Cardoso and her partner of 32 years, Isabel Pacheco, arrived at a coffee shop in the Vedado neighborhood.

The women soon began to speak passionately about LGBTI-specific issues with Juana Mora and Lidia Romero of Acepto, a group that advocates for marriage rights for same-sex couples in Cuba. It was sweltering inside the coffee shop because of a power outage, but the women nevertheless spoke with each other for more than an hour as they drank iced tea and coffee.

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Mariela Castro leads LGBT march in Havana

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL GAY MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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HAVANA — The daughter of Cuban President Raúl Castro on Saturday led a march through the Cuban capital that commemorated the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia.

Mariela Castro, who directs Cuba’s National Center for Sexual Education that is known by the Spanish acronym CENESEX, and more than 2,000 people marched from the Havana’s oceanfront to a pavilion that is near the Habana Libre hotel in the Vedado neighborhood.

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The VIP treatment at Havana’s most popular gay party

By : Michael K. Lavers OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL GAY MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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HAVANA — The ability of Cubans to find a way to work things out, which translates as “resolver” in Cuban Spanish, truly defies explanation. It proved particularly useful on Saturday night at Havana’s most popular gay party.

Café Cantante is a nightclub near Plaza de la Revolución that hosts Proyecto Divino, a party that features cabaret singers and other performers. It takes place every Saturday.

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