UN Vid: ILGA Rep Reads Statement Demanding Gay Envoy
The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA), enjoys observer non-governmental organization status at the United Nations, and on June 27, 2016, a representative of the group read the statement below into the record at the UN Human Rights Council's meeting in Geneva.
A vote was taken on June 20, 2016, with 23 nations voting to establish a UN LGBT Independent Expert to investigate violations of and adherence to human rights treaties as they pertain to queer folks, 18 against and six nations abstaining.
This is an enormous advance for us! For more info, visit ILGA's page about the vote and creation of this independent expert.
Statement from ILGA:
In countries and regions around the world, individuals experience grave human rights violations on the basis of
their actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity (SOGI). These include murder, rape, assault,
torture, arbitrary arrest, discrimination in access to health care, employment, housing and education,
repression of freedom of expression and association, attacks and restrictions on human rights defenders, denial
of police services, extortion, bullying, denial of one’s self-defined gender identity, and other abuses.
It’s time for the UN Human Rights Council to take meaningful action to end these abuses and advance positive
In June 2014, more than 500 NGOs from over 100 countries expressed profound concern at systemic human
rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Activists from around the world called on the
UN Human Rights Council to ensure sustained, systematic attention to the breadth of human rights violations
on these grounds, including through regular reporting and constructive dialogue.
Now it is time to translate
that call into action.
The Human Rights Council mandated the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to produce two
groundbreaking reports focusing – for the first time in the history of the UN – on discrimination and violence
against persons based on their sexual orientation and gender identity.
While these are welcome steps, it is time to move beyond one-off initiatives and piecemeal measures.
High Commissioner noted: “current arrangements to protect the human rights of LGBT and intersex persons are
inadequate”. The report emphasised “there is as yet no dedicated human rights mechanism at the international
level that has a systematic and comprehensive approach to the human rights situation of LGBT and intersex
This protection gap urgently needs to be addressed.
The undersigned organisations, from countries around the
world, call on the Human Rights Council to address this gap through the creation of an Independent Expert to
address discrimination and violence against persons based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
This UN mechanism should take into account the linkages to broader issues of gender equality, autonomy over
bodies and lives, and sexual and reproductive health and rights, as well as the multiple and intersecting forms
of discrimination on the basis of factors such as class, religion, gender, race, HIV status and disability.
We, the 628 NGOs listed at the end, call for a SOGI Independent Expert to monitor and document human rights
violations, prepare regular reports on issues such as root causes, trans rights, and protection gaps, engage with
States from around the world to build awareness of SOGI issues, identify good practices and encourage
reforms, help ensure the issues are better integrated throughout the UN system, work to support civil society
and NGOs working on these issues, enhance regional and cross-regional collaborations and strengthen
attention to the issues at the national, regional and international levels, highlight multiple and intersecting
forms of discrimination, and further articulate and increases awareness of these connections, particularly by
recognizing that SOGI issues are connected with a broad range of issues including gender equality, class, bodily
autonomy, sexual and reproductive health and rights.
The establishment of a dedicated protection mechanism to address SOGI-related human rights violations is a
necessary step towards urgently addressing the serious abuses on these grounds in every region of the
world. We urge the Human Rights Council to act urgently and establish such a mandate. As UN SecretaryGeneral
Ban Ki-moon affirmed: “The time has come”.
Post a Comment