The goal of the International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia is to raise awareness regarding the ways sexual orientation and gender variance are discriminated against and to strive for the ideal of a world in which everyone can freely choose their own sexual and gender identity.
In 2008, sexual relations between persons of the same sex were punishable by death in 7 countries and considered to be some form of crime in more than 80 others. In most countries in the world, people from the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, transexual, intersex, queer, … community are being denied their fundamental human rights as defined, inter alia, by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. –IDAHO committee
Homophobia and transphobia can have deadly consequences. Very recently in the United States there have been several highly publicized examples of youth suicide spurred on by anti-gay harassment and bullying. Research has shown that lesbian, gay and bisexual adolescents attempt suicide at a rate three to six times that of comparably aged heterosexual youth. There is also increasing evidence that much of the self-harm behavior reported among gay youth is related to anti-gay stigma expressed through bullying, harassment and violence. Further, studies show that children and adolescents whose appearance and personality traits do not conform to prescribed gender roles are often the target of anti-gay stigma, regardless of whether they consider themselves to be gay or lesbian. Such harassment can lead to feelings of isolation and despair, which in turn can also contribute to suicidal behavior.
“I’m Proud to Be Gay” messages from around the world:
What can be done about this? How can deeply ingrained prejudices regarding sexual orientation and gender be changed?
Have you experienced bullying, stigmatization due to your identity?
How have you reacted, coped?
Have you seen others bullied, harrassed? What have you done? What could you do?
For more information: