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United Nations’ Human Rights Council issues joint statement on LGBT human rights

unhrclogoMarch 22, 2011– Today the United Nations’ Human Rights Council issued a joint statement titled, “Ending Acts of Violence and Related Human Rights Violations Based On Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity,” calling for an end to violence, criminal sanctions, and human rights violations against people because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The statement, which was signed by a record-breaking 84 countries, is a positive step toward improving the lives of LGBT persons in communities around the world. The number of countries signing onto the statement increased by 30 since 2006 when the issue was first debated.

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United States Accepts UN Recommendations for Improving LGBT Rights at Home

March 10, 2010 – The US State Department released its response to the recommendations made by the United Nations Human Rights Council on the human rights record of the United States. Of the 228 recommendations made by countries around the world to the United States, three of the recommendations (86, 112, and 116) relate to LGBT rights. The United States officially accepted all three LGBT recommendations today.

The Council for Global Equality and Human Rights Campaign have engaged with the Universal Periodic Review process to ensure inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity in the review of the United States’ human rights record, and are pleased that the United States today has officially and formally accepted these recommendations. (read the report submitted by Human Rights Campaign and The Council for Global Equality here)

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U.S. Leads Battle to Recognize Gay Rights at UN

U.S. Leads Battle to Recognize Gay Rights at UN: Historic General Assembly Vote Reaffirms Equality for All

December 21, 2010 – In an important victory for LGBT rights on the floor of the UN General Assembly today, 93 countries supported a human rights resolution condemning gay killings around the world, with 55 countries voting against. The vote reverses an earlier effort by conservative countries to strip the reference to sexual orientation.

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U.S. will press for a major UN vote to restore language in a resolution on extrajudicial killings

ambsusanrice-un-hpUN, New York, Dec. 10—In a speech at a UN event to mark International Human Rights Day, U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice today announced that the U.S. will press for a major UN vote to restore language in a human rights resolution on extrajudicial killings to emphasize that LGBT people are often the targets of such murders.

The high-level panel marking human rights day focused exclusively on violence, discrimination and related abuse against LGBT communities worldwide.

 

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A New Passage to India

newdehliCan the U.S. and India Forge a Human Rights Partnership on LGBT Rights?

By Arvind Narrain and Mark Bromley

President Obama described his journey to India last month as the dawn of “one of the defining partnerships of the 21st century.”  And when confronted by human rights abuse, he reminded, “it is the responsibility of the international community—especially leaders like the United States and India—to condemn it.”  

On this Human Rights Day (December 10), our countries should commit to a new partnership to protect those who are persecuted worldwide because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.  This is the latest chapter in the modern human rights struggle, and in Obama’s words, it is time to “put aside old habits and attitudes.”

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U.S. Falls Behind Other Nations on LGBT Issues

un_geneva_flagsGeneva, November 5 – A high-level US government delegation today defended the country’s human rights record before the Human Rights Council at the UN in Geneva. In preparation for the review, the Council for Global Equality submitted an NGO report to the US government and to the UN to emphasize the lack of rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Americans. The Council is pleased that during the meeting today, known as the “Universal Periodic Review,” the US government freely admitted that the US civil rights record is incomplete and that LGBT Americans are among those who are still fighting to achieve full equality.
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U.S. Falls Behind Other Nations on LGBT Issues

For Immediate Release: November 5, 2010

Contact: Mark Bromley
202-607-6813

Geneva, November 5 – A high-level US government delegation today defended the country’s human rights record before the Human Rights Council at the UN in Geneva. In preparation for the review, the Council for Global Equality submitted a report to the US government and to the UN to emphasize the lack of rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Americans. The Council is pleased that during the meeting today, known as the “Universal Periodic Review,” the US government freely admitted that the US civil rights record is incomplete and that LGBT Americans are among those who are still fighting to achieve full equality.

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Council’s Senior Advisor to Lead U.S. Delegation to International Human Rights Conference

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photo: Lage Carlson
The State Department named former U.S. Ambassador Michael Guest, who also serves as a Senior Advisor to the Council, as the head of the U.S. delegation to an upcoming human rights conference in Warsaw, Poland in October.  At this annual human rights meeting of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which includes Eastern and Western Europe and North America, the United States will be speak out against violations of the rights to freedom of speech and association, while also highlighting patterns of extreme violence against minority communities, including the increasingly well-documented trend in LGBT violence and hate crime across the region.  This is the first time that the United States has included an openly gay advocate on its official delegation to the OSCE to address these alarming human rights trends.
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An LGBT Response to the State Department’s UPR Report

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by Julie Dorf, Senior Advisor

The best part of Arizona Governor Jan Brewer’s livid reaction to the U.S. report to the United Nations on our country’s human rights record was that it put this relatively obscure international human rights instrument–known as the Universal Periodic Review (UPR)–into the mainstream news this week. CNN and the New York Times would otherwise never have covered the UPR submission of the United States at the UN’s Human Rights Council without a scandal to report. Brewer was furious at the inclusion of a very brief mention of the pending federal court case reviewing Arizona’s controversial SB 1070 law on immigration, through which the federal government argues that they, not the states, are responsible for immigration law.

Continue reading at Global Equality Today

 

 

The Council for Global Equality Applauds Vote Conferring UN Status on the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC)

un photo - small size July 19, 2010 -- In a contentious vote, the UN today granted consultative status to the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC), despite strong objections from states that stand opposed to the recognition of LGBT rights at the UN. IGLHRC, a founding member of the Council, is the first LGBT group from the United States to secure this special status, and one of only a handful of LGBT groups in the world that has successfully navigated this hostile process. The Council congratulates IGLHRC and recognizes the strong leadership in support of this vote that came from the White House, the State Department, the U.S. Mission to the United Nations and from leading members of Congress.

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