Fair treatment and protection from violence and abuse are things that many of us take for granted. Yet for millions of lesbian, gay, bi, trans and intersex (LGBTI) people, justice is far from guaranteed. Globally, too many countries retain outdated or repressive laws, either lagging behind or wilfully rejecting progress towards LGBTI equality.
Because of this, being LGBTI often means hiding who you are or risking rejection, discrimination and violence. In some countries, it means arrest, a jail sentence or even the death penalty. Legal reform is urgently needed to protect people from acts of injustice and abuse and hold the perpetrators of such violations to account.
Real progress has been made in the fight for equality, but we’re not there yet. That’s why it’s so important to mark our support for LGBTI equality and show governments around the world that their citizens do not support repression or abuse in any form.
It’s time to accelerate the global march towards equality. Join the UN in demanding justice and protection for everyone, no matter who they are or whom they love.
Here’s how YOU can help
- Make sure you and those around you have zero tolerance for any form of homophobic, biphobic or transphobic bullying and violence, including aggressive and threatening verbal abuse.
- Challenge and report any form of abuse or discrimination towards LGBTI people, whether it’s at home, at work, in school, in public or online.
- Speak out when people around you are arrested or imprisoned because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
- Urge your government and lawmakers to take measures to protect LGBTI people from hate-fueled violence and discrimination.
- If you live in a country that criminalizes same sex love, write to your government and/or legislators and urge them to decriminalize consensual, adult same sex relationships.
- If you or your friends or family members are arrested and detained on charges relating to consensual, same-sex conduct, or a victim of hate-motivated violence, alert UN human rights special procedures by sending an email to [email protected].
Here’s what GOVERNMENTS need to do
- Repeal laws that criminalize consensual, adult same sex relationships, and other laws used to punish people based on their sexual orientation and gender identity.
- Ban discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity and sex characteristics in employment, education, health care and identification.
- Enact hate crime laws aimed at deterring violence on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity.
- Facilitate legal recognition of a person’s preferred gender without requiring sterilization, gender reassignment surgery or any other medical procedures or treatments to be carried out.
- Ban medically unnecessary surgeries and procedures on intersex children.
- Sensitize and train law enforcement, healthcare, education, judiciary and other service sector personnel to ensure fair and equal treatment of LGBTI people.