A municipal project in Cuenca for inclusion and respect of sexual diversity is underway.
María José Maldonado, regional councillor, says meetings have been held in public institutions and other sectors of society to educate people about the subject.
A municipal ordinance that recognizes sexual minorities is in the works. Maldonado says it will create a legal framework that prevents discrimination of LGBTI groups and promotes an inclusion policy at a municipal level.
The ordinance would get the local government to condemn violence, discrimination, exclusion and stigma against those communities. It would also create a diversity roundtable and a yearly medal that would recognize those working on this issue.
She says Cuenca is a progressive city in some senses, but also has a very conservative society. A 2012 study by the University of Cuenca found that 50 percent of lesbians surveyed reported being insulted for their sexual orientation, 43 percent of the gay men surveyed said the same. Twenty one percent of the men reported being physically assaulted; 48 percent of bisexual youth received verbal threats and 34 percent had been assaulted.