NEW YORK - March 29 - Developments in Geneva over the weekend indicate that Brazil will not continue as the prime sponsor of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights Resolution on Sexual Orientation and Human Rights. However, the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) and its global allies are rallying to ask other supporters of the resolution to step forward as prime sponsors.
According to IGLHRC, the Resolution can still go forward without Brazil in the lead. "We applaud Brazil's leadership on this issue. It has taken a heavy hit from many powerful forces for daring to stand up for the rights of sexual minorities," said Paula Ettelbrick, IGLHRC's Executive Director. "While this is a setback occasioned by intensive lobbying pressure from the Vatican, Islamic states and the far right wing, there are many countries who fully support this resolution and are committed to seeing it go forward."
Dozens of global advocates supporting the resolution have already gathered in Geneva to meet with government officials as well as human rights experts who have long acknowledged the violence and discrimination faced by lesbians, gay men and transgender persons in official United Nations documentation and reporting. The pressure increased in recent weeks as it became clear that support for the resolution was growing, particularly in Latin America, as sexual rights advocates have met with their government representatives at home.
According to Susana Fried, IGLHRC Program Director, the Resolution gives voice to the tremendous surge in LGBT organizing around the world over the last ten years. If passed, "it could be invoked to call on states to end all discrimination against people because of their sexual orientation and to uphold all of their rights, including in economic and social arenas, such as access to health, education and housing,"