Costa Rica’s first and only same-sex married couple are worried about their future in Costa Rica as the nation prepares to go to the polls this Sunday, April 1.
Evangelical preacher Fabricio Alvarado faces former minister Carlos Alvarado in an election dominated by the issue of same-sex marriage.
Laura and Jazmin were able to marry due to an error in the civil registry. Though Jazmin is clearly a woman, the civil registry birth certificate indicates she is male. As Laura explains, Jazmin’s passport and ID (cedula) have her as a man and the couple took advantage of that error and got married as a heterosexual couple.
But Laura and Jazmin are now worried about their future in Costa Rica.
Fabricio Alvarado, who could become Costa Rica’s next president tomorrow, is against same-sex marriage. Days prior to the February 4 presidential elections, on January 20, 2018, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (based in San Jose) ruled that Costa Rica must enact marriage equality.
At first, the candidate said he would take Costa Rica out of the Inter-American Court, later in the second round politicking softened his stand, though still opposes same-sex marriage.
His opponent, Carlos Alvarado, on the other hand, supports same-sex marriage.
Laura says the couple has been attacked, harassed. “We are very scared, we are afraid that hatred and harassment continues, that escalates … People hate us, we didn’t know we live in this kind of country. We don’t want to continue to live like this, with fear, and we are thinking of leaving (Costa Rica) and going to Spain,” says Laura.
In the video produced and filmed by Kate Barker and Ly Huong for the BBC World Service’s Newsday program, listen to their story.