Being an ally is about more than silent acceptance. It’s about being there for your lesbian, gay, bi, trans and intersex (LGBTI) family members, friends, colleagues, and neighbours.It’s about striving to understand their experiences, and helping them to understand yours. It’s about supporting one another in times of need. It’s about setting a positive example for others. And most importantly, it’s about creating a more inclusive and loving society where everyone is valued, no matter who they are or whom they love.
Violence and discrimination against lesbian, gay, bi, trans and intersex (LGBTI) people cannot be ended by governments alone. Businesses can foster diversity and promote a culture of respect and equality both in the workplace and in the communities where they and their business partners operate.The United Nations is calling on companies all over the world – big and small, local and multinational – to help to help move the dial in the direction of greater equality for LGBTI people.
As one of Brazil’s most successful divers, Ian Matos will be representing Brazil at the 2017 FINA World Championships in Budapest. In 2014, Ian decided to speak publicly about being gay. In this video, he speaks to UN Free & Equal about the political impact that everyone can have simply by coming out.
Culture and tradition are profound parts of our lives. They allow us to come together to mark life’s milestones, and celebrate our heritage and the people we love. For many, they provide a sense of home, of history and identity.
Every day, lesbian, gay, bi, trans (LGBT) and intersex kids – and other children seen as defying gender stereotypes – are bullied at school, at home and in their community. Bullying can take many forms–from taunting and name-calling to brutal violence.
Intersex people are born with sex characteristics that don’t fit typical definitions of male and female.In many countries, intersex children are subjected to repeated surgery and treatment to try to change their sex characteristics and appearance, causing terrible physical, psychological and emotional pain – and violating their rights.
The global movement for lesbian, gay, bi and trans (LGBT) equality encompasses millions of individuals, groups, organizations and campaigns all of whom are fighting for change in their own countries and communities.
This interactive map shows how different countries have criminalized, decriminalized (and in a few cases recriminalized), being gay throughout modern history. Starting in 1799, the map tells a poignant tale of how colonization spread homophobic legislation to many parts of the world. Use the slide at the bottom to speed through history and watch as successive waves of change affect country after country.
Lesbian, gay, bi, trans and intersex people cannot fight on their own. They need the support of their families, relatives, co-workers and friends. Iana Mallmann is a fierce lesbian activist living in Brasília, Brazil. Here, she shares with us her story of coming out, finding acceptance and discovering activism. “I will always be proud of who I am”, she says. “This is why I see a light at the end of the tunnel. I see that better days are coming. I truly think, feel and believe that we will go far."
Some lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people are particularly vulnerable to exclusion and hate crimes because they also face discrimination due to their age, gender, ethnicity, disability or other factors. In this video, Rebecca Religare, a LGBTI activist from the Brazilian LGBTI organization Corpolítica, talks about how she fights the intersecting forms of discrimination she faces – as a woman, a person of color and a lesbian.
The exhibition "I have rights" was first displayed in a public park in Lima in December 2015. It was organised by the UN country team in Peru, including UNAIDS, UNIC Lima, UNDP and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, in cooperation with the photographer Danielle Villasana and local civil society organizations and academic institutions.
U.S.-born rapper Macklemore and music producer Ryan Lewis are the latest artists to pledge their support for Free & Equal by helping to spread campaign messages and materials via social media. They join pop star Ricky Martin, South African singer Yvonne Chaka Chaka, Bollywood actress Celina Jaitly, and Brazilian singer Daniela Mercury.
“My promise to the lesbian, homosexual, bisexual and transgender members of the human family is this: I’m with you. I promise that as Secretary-General of the United Nations I will denounce attacks against you and I will keep pressing leaders for progress.”
Vicky Beeching is a former Christian music star and a popular religious commentator and media personality. She has emerged as a leading voice for Christian acceptance of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. In 2014, she came out in an interview with a national UK newspaper."No one should have to choose between their religious faith and their gay, lesbian or bisexual orientation. We are all God's children, created to love and be loved..."
Jason Collins, the first openly gay NBA player, wants a freer and more equal world. The latest in the United Nations’ series of public service announcements by LGBT activists and celebrities, Collins talks about how “ridiculous” it is that people are discriminated against for their sexual orientation and gender identity.
Our Free & Equal Equality Champion from Brazil, the celebrated pop star Daniela Mercury, shares inspiring words on why equality and freedom should be something everyone can take for granted. The video was launched at the same time as the campaign launch in Brazil on 28 April 2014.
fun., comprised of Nate Ruess, Jack Antonoff, and Andrew Dost, earned two Grammy wins for their 2012 album Some Nights, including Best New Artist and Song of the Year for the 5x-RIAA platinum “We Are Young.” Bolstered by the massive global success of “We Are Young,” as well as the 4x platinum title track, “Some Nights,” and 2x platinum song “Carry On,” Some Nights debuted at #3 on the Billboard 200 and has since been certified platinum. The band, known for its captivating live shows, continues to perform to sold-out crowds around the world. In 2012, fun. partnered with designer Rachel Antonoff to create The Ally Coalition. The Ally Coalition raises awareness about LGBTQ equality and provides resources for people to take action.
This Human Rights Day marks the 65th anniversary of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the UN General Assembly in 1948. Watch this short infographic video to see how it all came to be and what has happened in LGBT rights since.
In this video released by the Free & Equal campaign, Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu calls for an end to punishing people because of who they are or whom they love, saying "I oppose such injustice with the same passion that I opposed apartheid." Free & Equal is the United Nations campaign for LGBT equality.
Archbishop Desmond Tutu says he "won't worship a homophobic god," UN Human Rights Chief Navi Pillay says "everyone is born free and equal… no exceptions, no one left behind," and Justice Edwin Cameron says "the biggest foes of gay and lesbian, bisexual, transgendered and intersex equality have been invisibility and silence." Watch their strong statements at Free & Equal's launch in Capetown, South Africa.
In at least 76 countries, discriminatory laws criminalize private, consensual same-sex relationships, exposing millions of individuals to the risk of arrest, prosecution and imprisonment – and even, in at least five countries, the death penalty. Criminalization of consensual same-sex conduct violates rights to privacy and to freedom from discrimination, both protected under international law, and places States in material breach of their obligation to protect the human rights of all people, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.
In a historic address to the Human Rights Council in Geneva, United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon decries violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity and tells LGBT people "you are not alone."
Homophobia and transphobia don’t affect only lesbian, gay, bi and trans people. Avelino Mendes is a straight man and a loving father who lost his eldest son, Lucas, to homophobic violence in 2012. In this moving video, he talks about how his loss inspired him to take up activism.
Oyama Mbopa is a survivor of "curative" of "corrective" rape, a brutal and heinous crime that perpetrators believe will change their victim's sexual orientation. Watch here as Mbopa bravely shares her story, and learn more about how South Africa works to confront sexual violence and discrimination.