The draft resolution

The draft resolution, circulated by the LAC 7 fleshed out the themes outlined in the concept note. The preambular paragraphs inter alia, reaffirmed the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and recalled the Vienna Declaration and the two Human Rights Council resolutions on sexual orientation and gender identity in 2011 and 2014.  The operative paragraphs inter alia, deplored violence and discrimination in all regions of the world, committed against individuals because of their sexual orientation and gender identity and in operative paragraph 2,‘decides to appoint for a period of three years, an Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity’.

The mandate of the Independent Expert as per operative para 2 is as follows:

a) To assess the implementation of existing international human rights laws and standards with regard to ways to overcome violence and discrimination against persons on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity while identifying both best practices and gaps;

b) To raise awareness of violence and discrimination against persons on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity and to address the root causes of such violations;

c) To engage in dialogue and consult with States and other relevant stakeholders, including United Nations agencies, programmes and funds, regional human rights mechanisms, national human rights institutions, civil society organizations and academic institutions;

d) To work in cooperation with States in order to foster the implementation of measures that contribute to the protection of all persons against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity;

e) To address the multiple, intersecting and aggravated forms of violence and discrimination faced by persons on the basis of their sexual orientation and gender identity;

f) To conduct, facilitate and support the provision of advisory services, technical assistance, capacity-building and international cooperation in support of national efforts to combat violence and discrimination against persons on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity;

The mandate, while focused on sexual orientation and gender identity, understands that it’s not possible to abstract these concepts from older histories of domination. Hence, the mandate is expressly envisaged as having a focus on intersectionality as noted by the reference to ‘multiple, intersecting and aggravated forms of violence and discrimination and to addressing ‘root causes of such violations.’