Our Model For LGBTIQ Human Rights Change

OutRight seeks to advance human rights and opportunities for LGBTIQ people around the world by developing critical partnerships at global, regional, and national levels to build capacity, document violations, advocate for inclusion and equality, and hold leaders accountable for protecting the rights of all LGBTIQ people. Today, we partner with local LGBTIQ organizations across four regions and maintain a cross-regional LGBTIQ initiative at the UN in New York. As an international LGBTIQ organization with a long history of productive and trusting relationships with grassroots LGBTIQ communities worldwide, we serve as a bridge between local communities and high-impact external levers of power.

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OutRight’s work operates on a continuum. We work to advocate for and influence change at all levels of power—national, bilateral, sub-regional, regional, and global. We call this interlocking spectrum of power the ladder of influence. To make our communities stronger, we want LGBTIQ rights to be integrated at every level of this ladder. OutRight’s value is in our ability to connect our partners to these different levels of power to push an agenda for change.

Background / Our Story

In at least 72 countries globally, same-sex relations (let alone relationship recognition) between consenting adults remains illegal; penalties range from corporal punishment, to jail terms, to life imprisonment, to the death penalty. Discriminatory laws are found in both explicit terms, and in vague language related to morality, the policing of gender, and offenses against the so-called ‘order of nature.’ Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) people are subject to arrest, blackmail, and harassment on frivolous charges such as ‘loitering,’ ‘vagabondry,’ and ‘cross-dressing.’ Violence against those who are gender non-conforming are particularly frequent and widespread.

For 27 years, we have fought and will continue to fight to protect and advance the basic rights of LGBTIQ people everywhere as part of the global human rights movement. We empower people on the front lines, hold leaders accountable at the United Nations and regional human rights monitoring bodies and measure our impact through positive change in people’s lives.

When we began the fight for human dignity for LGBTIQ people, the cause did not have the visibility it has today. Nor had our community taken the strides toward equality and recognition we are seeing in many countries. But progress is uneven and this reality forms the core of our struggle. We strive for a world in which LGBTIQ individuals can live with dignity, achieve freedom and justice and are unencumbered by prejudice and discrimination to pursue their ambitions, wherever they are.

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Source data for the inforgraphic can be found at: For World Populations | ILGA State Sponsored Homophobia Report May 2015