Hivos joins international NGOs in deploring UN inaction on LGBTI rights

July 1, 2014

Last month Hivos joined 500 NGOs from over 100 countries in calling for the UN Human Rights Council to take action to protect LGBTI rights around the world years after an initial resolution was made to do so.  

The call circulated to NGOs and activists around the world urging them to sign an online petition makes clear there has been no movement from the international community to put into action the first resolution taken three years ago:  “Three years after the first resolution, no State has yet committed to follow-up at the Council. It’s time to send a strong clear messagethat our communities expect more from the UN’s primary human rights body.”

The participating NGOs, headed by ILGA, the world federation of LGBTI organisations which represents over a thousand member organisations, then presented the petition to the 26th session of the Human Rights Council.

“In too many countries, we face severe human right violations – we are criminalised including under colonial-era laws, we face the death penalty, we are murdered, lesbians are subject to rape and forced marriage; intersex people face genetic de-selection, infanticide, coerced sterilization and genital mutilation; transgender persons are demeaned and beaten, subjected to pathologisation and sterilisation, their identities often unrecognized by States,” said the statement in part.

The petition also lauded positive developments that have taken place around the world in thestruggle to protect LGBTI rights. These include the recent adoption by the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights of a resolution on the “Protection Against Violence and other Human Rights Violations Against Persons on the Basis of their Real or Imputed Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity” and the adoption by the Organization of American States just this month of its resolution on “Human Rights, Sexual Orientation, and Gender Identity and Expression”.

The statement said that the violations against members of the LGBTI community were systemic, and as such needed systemic responses.

It called on the Council to adopt a resolution “to ensure regular reporting, constructive dialogue and sustained, systematic attention to the breadth of human rights violations on these grounds.”

You can download the full statement in the ‘Documents’ pane on the right.