Highlights of Our Work in 2016

Two thousand and sixteen has been a roller coaster ride of ups and downs.

During the year, we witnessed the events at the Pulse nightclub shooting in the U.S. where members from our community were lost. Then there was the creation of the first United Nations Independent Expert on sexual orientation and gender identity issues.  A position that has needed defending from conservatives who have tried to block the Human Rights Council’s mandate.

In the year, we also saw Chile ruling in favor of intersex rights for children, Uganda not allowing their pride to be deterred, Botswana deporting hate spewing anti-LGBT pastor, while the Belize Supreme Court said punishing homosexuality was unconstitutional, and most recently Taiwan is making a push towards laws that would protect LGBT persons. Through it all, we had each other and a system of support and solidarity that has emerged stronger than ever.

Let’s keep up this momentum in 2017, for we all know much has yet to be done!

Below are highlights of our work towards advancing global LGBTIQ human rights...

Co-organized the highest level LGBT event to have taken place at the UN headquarters in history. The event featured government representatives including the United States Vice President Joe Biden, President of Chile Michelle Bachelet, Prime Minister of Norway Erna Solberg, and UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon

 

Campaigned for the UN Human Rights Council to create an Independent Expert on sexual orientation and gender identity. The mandate passed in June 2016. Vitit Muntarbhorn has been chosen for the Independent Expert position.

 

Published in-depth reports highlighting human rights violations in Iran: "Being Transgender in Iran," "Being Lesbian in Iran."

 

Partnered with the Human Rights Office of the Philippine National Police to conduct a series of sensitivity training workshops to improve police conduct, services, and protection for LGBTIQ people. Report includes training information and analysis.

 

Published briefing papers focusing on human rights of trans individuals in Chile, Colombia, and Costa Rica

 

Tracked crimes committed by ISIS against LGBTIQ people, including executions of persons accused of indecent behavior, sodomy, and adultery

 

Our annual gala, A Celebration of Courage, was held at UN headquarters in New York City and hosted by activist and actor Alan Cumming.

 

Hosted 60+ activists from 27+ countries for our annual United Nations’ Advocacy Week. A goal of this year’s week was to advocate for states to protect the SOGI Independent Expert, and we achieved this goal!

 

Organized our 2nd annual OutSummit that brought together over 150 attendees from all around the world to discuss, collaborate and focus on global LGBTIQ issues via panels, workshops and keynote speakers, Randy Berry and Amir Ashour. Watch video highlights »