Around the world, millions of people in more than 130 countries will observe today as the 2018 International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOTB).
The International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) was created in 2004 to draw the attention of policymakers, opinion leaders, social movements, the public and the media to the alarming situation faced by lesbian, gay, bisexuals, transgender people and all those who do not conform to majority sexual and gender norms.
Even as millions of LGBTQ people around the world are standing up for visibility and fighting for their rights, many live in fear and isolation.
In most countries, LGBTQ people continue to lack fundamental rights and protections, and are at risk of discrimination and violence. In as many as 10 countries, the act of being LGBTQ is punishable by death.
And transgender people face an epidemic of violence and murder on a daily basis, including here in the U.S.
IDAHOTB is not one centralized campaign; rather it is a moment that everyone can take advantage of to take action.
Here are some facts and figures the Human Rights Campaign is monitoring around the world:
- Marriage equality is now legal in 25 countries;
- 72 countries currently criminalize same-sex relationships, and in up to 10 countries, same-sex relationships may be punishable by death;
- More than 2,600 murders of transgender people were recorded between 2008 and 2017, according to data from the Trans Murder Monitoring project;
- A disturbing trend is emerging across the globe as governments in Lithuania, Nigeria and Russia are silencing equality advocates and organizations with so-called “anti-propaganda” laws.
The date of May 17th was specifically chosen to commemorate the World Health Organization’s decision in 1990 to declassify homosexuality as a mental disorder.
It’s worth noting that President Obama issued a statement regarding IDAHOTB each year of his administration.
Donald Trump’s White House? Not a peep – which has become standard operating procedure for the Trump/Pence administration when it comes to LGBTQs.
“While the global LGBTQ community is filled with innovative advocates advancing equality, the Trump-Pence administration has failed to stand up in support of LGBTQ people around the world — from Chechnya to Egypt and far too many other places,” said Ty Cobb, director of HRC’s global department. “This International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, it is imperative that world leaders commit to stepping up and doing more to protect the human rights of all people.”
Everyone deserves the same rights & opportunities in life no matter who they love or how they identify. Today on #IDAHOTB, and every day, we stand together against stigma, persecution, and discrimination. https://t.co/zDkeFs6SQh pic.twitter.com/3iIypliSXI
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) May 17, 2018
— IDAHOTB (@may17IDAHOTB) May 16, 2018