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Why We Fight

National LGBT group Naz Pakistan

16.05.2016 – To celebrate the International Day against Homophobia & Transphobia (IDAHOT) on 17 May 2016, UN Free and Equal asked people to help create a video that captures some of the strength and spirit that LGBT activists and allies bring to their work, and the sheer diversity of causes that help make up the movement globally. The result is a celebration of activism – and a reminder of why we fight.

The global movement for lesbian, gay, bi, trans and intersex (LGBTI) equality encompasses millions of individuals, groups, organisations and campaigns all of whom are fighting for change in their own countries and communities. 

Created in 2004 to draw the attention of policymakers, opinion leaders, social movements, the public and the media to the violence and discrimination experienced by LGBTI people internationally, IDAHOT, in just under a decade, has established itself the single most important date for LGBTI communities to mobilise on a worldwide scale.

An activist waves a rainbow flag

The global campaign is now celebrated every year in more than 130 countries, including 37 where same-sex acts are illegal. These mobilisations unite millions of people in support of the recognition of human rights for all, irrespective of sexual orientation or gender identity or expression.  Rather than a centralised campaign; IDAHOT represents a moment that everyone can take advantage of to take action.

The theme of this year’s event, Mental Health and Wellbeing, reflects the choice for celebrating the campaign on May 17 – a date specifically chosen to commemorate the World Health Organization’s decision in 1990 to declassify homosexuality as a mental disorder.

The ILGA Rainbow Map for May 2016 ranks countries in order of the national legal and policy human rights situation for LGBTI people – 100% equating full respect of human rights and full equality, and 0% meaning gross violations of human rights and discrimination. According to the figures, Malta comes out top with a score of 88%, followed by Belgium and the UK. At the other end of the spectrum sit Azerbaijan with 5%, Armenia with 7% and Turkey with 9%.


UNRICs Related Links


· UN Free and Equal 

· WHO 

· UN Free and Equal Fight Song 

· ILGA Rainbow Map 

Photo One: IDAHOT, In Lahore, national LGBT group Naz Pakistan will host a drag show and panel discussion to mark IDAHOT 2016 on May 15th. 

Photo Two: An activist waves a rainbow flag, an international symbol for the rights of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people. Photo: Flickr/See-ming Lee. 

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