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UN Women statement for the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia

UN Women stands in solidarity with and supports everyone with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities, gender expressions and sex characteristics (SOGIESC) in efforts to resist, support and heal from hatred, fear and discrimination.

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to isolate individuals, separate families and devastate communities the world over, leaving no member of our human family unaffected. It has laid bare deep-rooted inequalities across societies and amplified structural and historical injustice. It has exposed both new and existing degrees of discrimination, especially against those already marginalized who are undergoing the concurrent and compounding crises of health and economic injustices and environmental degradation.

Now, these concerns are joined by response to shocking accounts of systemic racial discrimination and brutality from police and state security forces across the world, elevating concerns for racial justice. For centuries, white supremacy, the legacies of colonialism and imperialism, heteronormativity and binary gender norms have been used to justify violence and criminalization based on race and SOGIESC. Black, brown and indigenous communities with diverse SOGIESC have long faced overlapping threats of danger, exploitation and forced displacement, and continue to experience increased harm.

LGBTIQ+ people not only share common visions of gender equality and racial justice but are trailblazers. Their specific needs must be recognized in the current context, which presents an opportunity for the UN system to model diverse SOGIESC inclusion within relief and recovery efforts, to build awareness of LGBTIQ+ issues, strengthen partnerships and increase expectations for future policy, programming and advocacy.

This year’s theme is a resounding guide for real action and solidarity for us all. As we move ahead towards the Generation Equality Forum in Paris from 30 June to 2 July, we are mobilizing a series of concrete, ambitious and transformative actions to achieve immediate and irreversible progress towards gender equality across sectors and age groups, recognizing people in all their diversity. Those solutions include attention to LGBTIQ+ rights. UN Women is resolute in its leadership role in achieving gender equality for all, in solidarity with our partners and in support of all people with diverse SOGIESC. As allies, we resist anti-gender discourse and support the vital work at the intersections of LGBTIQ+, race, gender and rights.

Together, we must heal after experiencing, witnessing, and struggling so much. Only united can we heal from the harm caused and recover from the profound grief and intergenerational trauma caused at the hands of fellow citizens, States, and institutions all over the world.

In marking this International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia and every day, we emphasize that at UN Women we work for you; we stand with you, and in respect for, honour and celebration of the diversity and resilience of LGBTIQ+ peoples globally.

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