While the state of the world for those in the LGBT community has improved greatly compared to the past, it is evident that there remains a problematic amount of discrimination occurring worldwide. Prejudice against gay dating, lackluster LGBT support, queer discrimination and more wreak havoc on LGBT individuals’ mental health every day, causing low self-esteem, anxiety and other problems.
While Rainbow Fellowship Global Network (RFGN) believes that this worrying trend will one day subside, it is important to recognize and pinpoint current areas where improvement is necessary. Read on as we present the latest in LGBT information and identify how LGBT discrimination shapes our society.
It has never been easy to understand how many LGBT people there truly are worldwide, but some estimates have been acquired in recent years. Take a look at some of the recent numbers below:
- Japan: 10% of the population identifies as LGBT.
- Canada: 7% of the population identifies as gay or lesbian, with 1.3% identifying as bisexual.
- United States: 5% of the population identifies as LGBT.
- United Kingdom: 2% of the population identifies as lesbian, gay or bisexual.
Now, while these numbers may seem incredibly small at first look, they actually tally up to millions of queer individuals. Even if the LGBT community is only a small percentage of the global population, RFGN understands that they still make up an incredible number of people who deserve respect, rights and justice like any other person.
While the incredible amount of LGBT information available has yielded encouraging statistics, it has also revealed startling revelations about our current world.
The following countries have been recognized as some of the most well-known places that are unsafe for gay travelers, as they actively criminalize the LGBT community, revoke LGBT support and do not support gay dating. Also listed are their punishments.
- Afghanistan: Death penalty.
- Algeria: 3-year imprisonment.
- Bangladesh: Life imprisonment.
- Ethiopia: 1-year imprisonment.
- Ghana: 3-year imprisonment.
- Indonesia: 8-year imprisonment and 100 lashes.
- Iran: Death penalty.
- Jamaica: 10-year imprisonment with hard labor.
- Kenya: 14-year imprisonment.
- Libya: 5-year imprisonment.
- Malaysia: 20-year imprisonment.
- Maldives: 8-year imprisonment.
- Morocco: 3-year imprisonment.
- Qatar: Death by stoning.
- Singapore: 2-year imprisonment.
- Tanzania: Life imprisonment.
- Uganda: Life imprisonment.
- Yemen: Death penalty.
- Zimbabwe: 1-year imprisonment.
Because of their drastic punishments against people from the LGBT community, RFGN highly advises that queer individuals avoid these countries. When including the countries that were not mentioned in this list, the final number of countries that criminalize homosexuality comes out to 68 in total — 12 of which carry the death sentence.
At Rainbow Fellowship Global Network, we want to remind queer individuals that there is still hope — no matter how frightening the numbers above may be.
Reform for LGBT support is constantly occurring around the world, and research proves that progress is being made. As such, here are the best countries that make an effort to foster inclusive and safe environments for gay dating within the LGBT community. Each country listed has legalized same-sex marriage, encouraged LGBT worker protections against discrimination, criminalized hate-crimes and enabled LGBT adoption (granting them the grade of A).
- United Kingdom
In comparison, the United States ranks #23 (earning it the grade of B-), due to the fact that some states are allowed to prohibit “advocacy of homosexuality” in schools, therefore limiting the amount of LGBT support and LGBT information included in curriculums.
The Future of Discrimination
Thanks to the wide availability of LGBT information, RFGN can easily paint a picture of what discrimination looks like in our present reality. The future, however, is not as clear.
Fortunately for queer individuals everywhere, there is no shortage of activists who fight daily to enact change and ensure the future is as bright as ever. Furthermore, many heterosexual individuals have taken up the fight as well, choosing to speak out alongside their queer peers.
As the new decade approaches, Rainbow Fellowship Global Network expects the LGBT community to experience greater progress via the following methods:
- Representation in Media: Many movies, TV shows and video games are now including queer characters — many of whom are major characters in each story.
- Improved Rights: Discrimination in the workplace is still rampant, even in places that allow same-sex marriage.
- Inclusive Education: Schools will begin to incorporate LGBT information into their curriculums.
- Outspoken Leaders: More public figures, like recent US presidential elect Joe Biden, will encourage nationwide LGBT support.