Peru: Lima university attempts to fire lesbian professor

Living in Peru
Israel J. Ruiz

According to a teacher at a university in Lima, her superiors wanted to fire her because she is a lesbian.

"San Martin de Porres University asked me to resign because of my sexual preference," said Esther Vargas, a professor at the university.

Vargas, the editor of the Society section for Peru21 daily and a journalism professor at the university, explained that two department heads from the Communications faculty told her she was fired because there were parents who were "uneasy" about "the sexual preference of their children’s teacher".

Vargas stated that there were a lot of homosexual people that did not speak up or press charges when they were discriminated against, stating that many were mistreated, fired or forced to quit their jobs.

She attributed this to the fact that there were still many gay people that are afraid of letting family members, co-workers, classmates, neighbors or friends know of their sexual preferences.

The journalism professor, who also has a sex column at the daily, said to believe that what made the university take the decision was an interview that she gave for a blog.

She affirmed that she had never hidden the fact that she was lesbian and stated that she had also made this known during the interview.

Vargas said the university retracted its statements and asked her to continue teaching her classes as if nothing had happened.

She assured that if there were any further incidents she would seek counsel from Susel Paredes, a well-known lawyer.