HRC44 – Statement urging to address LGBTI human rights violations worldwide

Statement by the International Lesbian and Gay Association, joined by Allied Rainbow Communities International, Federatie van Nederlandse Verenigingen tot Integratie van Homoseksualiteit – COC Nederland, International Service for Human Rights (ISHR), OutRight Action International, Swedish Federation of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights – RFSL

Statement at 44th session of the Human Rights Council – June 30, 2020.

Item 2 – Interactive Dialogue on the Annual Report of the High Commissioner

Delivered by Gabriel Galil

Madam High Commissioner,

This is a joint statement. We thank you for your and your offices efforts in addressing LGBTI human rights violations worldwide. The Free and Equal campaign, as well as the support through regional offices have been pivotal in raising awareness on LGBTI issues.

We welcome the recognition by your office of specific impacts of the COVID19 pandemic on LGBTI persons and the guidance provided to states on how to address this situation[1]. ILGA World, on behalf of 187 organizations, submitted a written statement to this session addressing these specific impacts of the pandemic and the measures taken to address it on the LGBTI community and on those who defend their rights[2]. We urge you to continue to include LGBTI issues specifically in your following oral updates and reports on COVID19.

We also welcome the report drafted by your office on race and gender discrimination in sports[3], in which you call for states to adopt legislation prohibiting discrimination based on sex characteristics and to work together with intersex organizations. Together with the Background Note on Human Rights Violations against Intersex People[4] launched last year, those are two important milestones towards ensuring protection of the rights of persons with diverse sex characteristics.

Madam High Commissioner,

Despite all the efforts and campaigns carried out so far, LGBTI persons continue to have their human rights systematically violated. We continue to live in a world where 68 countries still criminalize same-sex relationships[5], where 57 criminalize or persecute trans persons[6] and where intersex people are subjected to forced and coercive medical interventions[7] almost everywhere.

We urge your Office to continue to address these human rights violations and we stand ready to work together for a world where we can all be Free and Equal, regardless of our sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression or sex characteristics.

I thank you, madam president.

[1] OHCHR, COVID19 and the Impact on LGBTI people. https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/LGBT/LGBTIpeople.pdf

[2] ILGA WORLD. 187 Organisations Call on States To Protect LGBTI Persons' Human Rights In The Context Of Covid-19 Outbreak. https://ilga.org/downloads/HRC_statement_LGBTI_persons_and_Covid_19.pdf

[3] A/HRC/44/26, para. 54(b); 59(a).

[4] OHCHR. Background Note on Human Rights Violations against Intersex People. https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Discrimination/LGBT/BackgroundNoteHumanRightsViolationsagainstIntersexPeople.pdf

[5] ILGA World: Lucas Ramon Mendos, State-Sponsored Homophobia 2019: Global Legislation Overview Update.

[6] TGEU. Trans Respect versus Transphobia Worldwide. https://transrespect.org/en/map/criminalization-and-prosecution-of-trans-people/

[7] OHCHR. Background Note on Human Rights Violations against Intersex People. https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Discrimination/LGBT/BackgroundNoteHumanRightsViolationsagainstIntersexPeople.pdf