On IDAHOT HRC Shows Solidarity with Global LGBT Movement

Today, HRC released a video celebrating the eleventh-annual International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia (IDAHOT). This year’s IDAHOT theme is “youth,” celebrating LGBT youth and their contributions to their communities. In the video, HRC’s youth ambassadors - a group of young LGBT activists living in the United States who were chosen for their courage and commitment to speaking out on issues affecting LGBT youth - send a message of solidarity against homophobia, transphobia, biphobia, and all forms of hate facing LGBT people across the globe.

“IDAHOT is an opportunity to celebrate how far we've come in the global struggle for equality, but it's also a moment to remember that for millions, the path to justice is still marred with barriers.” said HRC Global Director Ty Cobb. “Our journey is nowhere near over.”

IDAHOT celebrates the 25th anniversary of the World Health Organization’s (WHO) resolution to declassify same-sex attraction as a mental disorder. The move followed a similar decision by the  American Psychiatric Association in 1973. The WHO’s monumental change created a shift in how many LGBT people were treated. In 2004, LGBT activists gathered for the first time to honor this date with rallies in support of equality; the occasion is now marked by celebrations, governmental proclamations, and renewed efforts to end the discrimination and violence that LGBT people throughout the world still face.

“Today we join together with the LGBT community across the globe. Celebrating not only one moment in history, but what can be accomplished worldwide, from Kenya to Kyrgyzstan to our own front doors,” said Cobb.

Last year, for the first time ever, the White House released a statement in honor of IDAHOT. In it, President Obama and Vice President Biden called “on partners everywhere to join us in defending the equal rights of our LGBT brothers and sisters, and in ensuring they are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve.”

The situation for LGBT people around the world varies widely. As some countries embrace equality; in others, LGBT people continue to suffer from discrimination, persecution and violence.

  • Anti-LGBT discrimination continues to put lives at real risk.  75 countries currently criminalize same-sex relationships. Even worse, hundreds of transgender individuals have been brutally murdered in the last year.
  • In 10 countries, same-sex conduct is punishable by death.
  • Moreover, across the globe, governments from Nigeria to Russia have fought to silence equality advocates and organizations with so-called “anti-propaganda” laws -- a disturbing trend that leads to human rights violations.
  • Same-sex marriage licenses are issued nationwide in 20 countries.

The Human Rights Campaign is America’s largest civil rights organization working to achieve lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality. HRC envisions a world where LGBT people are embraced as full members of society at home, at work and in every community.

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International