The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 1948, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and numerous other international human rights instruments have embodied the principle of equality between human beings. All legislative instruments prohibit discrimination on the basis of color, gender, and sexual orientation. Therefore, every individual human being is entitled to the rights enumerated in these legislative instruments including the right to life, security of person and privacy, the right to be free from torture, arbitrary arrest and detention, the right to be free from discrimination, and the right to freedom of expression, association, and peaceful assembly. However, discrimination against the members of the LGBTQ community is prevalent in many parts of the world. The members of the LBGTQ community including gay, lesbians, trans, bisexual, pansexual, and people with other sexual orientations are denied fundamental rights on the basis of their sexual orientation.

 

The members of the LGBTQ community face discrimination in the employment sector. There are reports in which members of the LGBTQ community have been denied a promotion, members of the LGBTQ community have been fired and denied a job on the basis of their sexual orientation. Similarly, there are reports of discrimination against the members of the LGBTQ community in academic institutions and they face bullying and discriminatory treatment. The members of the LGBTQ community are not only discriminated against in the academic institutions, labor market, and other public places but they are subject to discrimination in their own families. There are reports which have indicated that the members of the LGBTQ community have been mistreated and disowned by their own families.

 

According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, the members of the LGBTQ community face physical violence on the ground of their sexual orientation and gender identity. They are singled out for physical attraction, sexually assaulted, tortured, and killed. Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights has guaranteed the right to freedom of expression. According to which every individual human being is entitled to express themselves without any restriction. The members of our community exercise the freedom of expression through their dress and conduct. However, in some countries there are legal restrictions imposed on dressing and some countries have imposed criminal penalties on cross-dressing. These discriminatory laws are employed to inflict violence on the members of our community and these discriminatory acts are recognized by law. 

 

At Rainbow Fellowship we believe that love is the most significant part of human life and it is one of the most significant human rights. Every individual human being shall be entitled to embrace love and establish romantic relationships. No one shall be deprived of love. However, the reports of Amnesty International has indicated that the members of our community are deprived of the right to love one another and enter into romantic relationships and consensual sexual relationships. The report of Amnesty International has indicated that around 70 countries have imposed criminal penalties on private, consensual same-sex relationships. Members of our community are subject to the risk of arrest, prosecution, and imprisonment for exercising their most fundamental life i.e. the right to love. Some countries have also imposed capital punishments on a same-sex relationship such as Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Afghanistan, etc.

 

At Rainbow Fellowship we believe that our sexual orientation is part of our identity. Our sexual orientation is part of who we are and we are entitled to be legally recognized and entitled to embrace our gender identity. Although numerous countries have enacted laws for legally recognizing gender. However, the members of our community have to undergo a humiliating process to be legally recognized. The members of our community have to undergo a process that includes psychiatric diagnosis and irreversible sterilization. At Rainbow Fellowship, we believe that the process of legal recognition is not only humiliating but it is also discriminatory. It is a violation of our most fundamental rights which have been recognized at an international forum. At Rainbow fellowship, we believe that we have the right to express ourselves in peaceful gatherings. One such event is the pride parade, members of our community express themselves in the pride parade and create awareness about the rights and challenges of our community. Therefore, restrictions on the conduct of pride parade is not only discriminatory but also against democratic values.

 

At Rainbow Fellowship we recognize and appreciate the efforts of members of our community for the recognition of our most fundamental human rights. The struggle and fight of members of our community against discrimination have resulted in many positive developments. These include enactment of gender-neutral laws, prohibition on the discrimination on basis of sexual orientation, etc. Similarly, different countries have also recognized same-sex marriage and provide recognition and legitimacy to same-sex marriage. Due to which members of our community may enter into a legal marriage and be entitled to the protection granted by law to married couples such as the right of inheritance etc. According to the report of Amnesty International same-sex marriage is legalized in around 29 countries. Similarly, more than 43 countries have enacted laws to treat homophobia as a type of hate crime. Although it is a small number we considered it as a milestone that has been achieved through a very long struggle of members of our community.

 

At Rainbow Fellowship we recognize and celebrate the achievements of our community. We believe that the introduction of the concept of pride and global recognition days like the International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia are positive developments for the members of our community. These developments will contribute to change discriminatory laws, discriminatory practices, and prejudice against the members of our community. At RFGN we recommend that the international community and international organizations such as the United Nations shall ensure the compliance of International Human Rights Instruments. The discriminatory laws and practices against the members of our community shall be eliminated, similarly, the laws such as capital punishment on consensual same-sex relations, restrictions on pride parade, a humiliating process for legal recognition, laws on cross-dressing, and similar discriminatory laws shall be repealed. At RFGN we believe in equality and suggest measures for a more inclusive world in which every individual human being is entitled to live their life according to their beliefs.

 

 

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