Join the New Tactics community for an online conversation on Creating and Sustaining Awareness of LGBTQI Rights from June 26-30, 2017.
LGBTQI rights were only officially recognized as human rights by the United Nations in 2011. Since then the OHCHR’s Free & Equal campaign has sought to raise awareness and advocate for an end to discrimination against LGBTQI individuals. However, it is difficult to break the stigma which exists against non-heterosexual or cisgender individuals in many cases. This means that even when legal protections are instituted, enforcement is oftentimes lacking. Furthermore a lack of consensus exists among nations on whether LGBTQI rights are in fact human rights despite the official UN stance. To date, roughly a third of countries criminalize same-sex relationships and few adequately protect the physical or mental safety of LGBTQI individuals. This frustrates efforts to expand LGBTQI rights in areas where these are not held to be as important or essential as other human rights issues.
Educational initiatives play a key part in securing greater protections for LGBTQI individuals. Increasing awareness of LGBTQI rights as human rights not only enhances advocacy efforts, but makes it easier for NGOs and international organizations to apply pressure when violations occur. To this end, innovative approaches have emerged to foster understanding of the need for equal and dignified treatment of LGBTQI individuals.
In 2006 a collective of human rights defenders authored the Yogyakarta Principles, a guide to applying long accepted human rights principles to LGBTQI advocacy. The results of this helped provide a common language for human rights defenders seeking to promote LGBTQI rights. One example is in Argentina which in 2012 adopted the Ley de Identidad de Género, which allows individuals to identify with the name and gender of their choice without medical treatment or surgeries. Argentina’s law quotes from the Yogyakarta Principles on gender identity and remains one of the most progressive national policies on the subject in the world.
In this conversation, we seek to explore past successes and ways to promote, maintain and protect a culture that recognizes LGBTQI rights as human rights.
New Tactics in Human Rights does not advocate for or endorse specific tactics, policies or issues.