Everyone, regardless of their gender identity and their sexual orientation has the right to live free from persecution, stigma, discrimination, and violence. International human rights law has put an obligation on all states to ensure that all people can enjoy these rights.
Even though efforts have been increasing gradually to protect the rights of the LGBTQ community, there are still valid concerns globally that people in the community or those perceived to be part of it still face violations of their human rights. This is not only a vital cause for alarm but for action too.
Effects of Violence
Violence against the LGBTQ community is failure to validate the community’s human rights and protect individuals against discriminatory practices and laws, and violence. As a result, it is a violation against International Human Rights Law and can have a more significant impact on the society at large. Violence against the LGBTI community can result in negative health issues, economic and social exclusion, and negative impacts on societal economic growth.
States are the primary duty bearers when it comes to protecting citizens of all designations against violence and discrimination. However, when they don’t, minority individuals in the society are at risk and do not get the proper recognition from parliaments, judiciaries, governments, and human rights institutions that they should.
Violence in the LGBTI community isn’t only limited to the older generation but on teens and youth as well through expulsion from school, discrimination and bullying based on their perceived or actual gender identity or that of their primary caregivers or their parents. Violence and discrimination lead to LGBTI marginalization, contribute to denial of care or legal recognition of preferred genders.
States can help to stop violence against the LGBTI community by:
- Prohibiting violence and discrimination against all LGBTI adolescents, children, and adults in all situations such as healthcare, education, employment, and criminal justice.
- Facilitate the legal recognition and gender identity of all gender identities including transgender people without the need for abusive requirements.
- Help to combat violence and prejudice against the community by initiating public education, training, and dialogue.
- Ensuring the LGBTI community participates and is consulted in the formulation, implementation, and evaluation of programmes, laws, and policies that will affect them.
When states are unable to protect even it’s minority citizens against violence, it shows that there’s a deficiency in process and procedures that result in the violations of human rights laws. The LGBTQ+ community is, as a result, left to their own means while the state stands by to watch when violence and discrimination is issued against them.
It is vital that such experiences are taken into consideration to help combat prejudice and violence against the LGBTI community through public education of the community at large, dialogue, and introduction of policies and laws that protect the community.
The LGBTQ+ community must also be involved when it comes to formulating policies and laws that will affect them and their future as well.