This week I talked with Jessica Stern, Executive Director of OutRight Action International that specializes in gender, sexuality and human rights globally, about how the Trump presidency could effect our LGBT civil rights. OutRight Action International, the only US based LGBTIQ organization with consultative status at the United Nations has called on the upcoming Trump administration to maintain important policies and programs introduced by the Obama administration to safeguard the human rights of LGBTIQ people everywhere. Over the last eight years the United States has initiated unprecedented commitment to promote the human rights of LGBTIQ people by issuing a presidential memorandum to advance LGBT human rights, appointing a Special Envoy for LGBTI Rights, banning USAID contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity and financing support of the Global Equality Fund among other initiatives. This is not a time to become complacent when dealing with the threat of a homophobic Trump administration. This is a time for our LGBT community and allies to organize and maintain the progress we have worked so hard to achieve. I talked to Jessica about how other countries dealing with an anti-LGBT agenda have worked to move their countries forward and give us her spin on our LGBT issues.
We as a queer community and as a human rights community have to move forward with extraordinary caution because so far it seems that Trump himself is not particularly ideological about LGBTIQ rights and actually has in various incidents acknowledged the power of the LGBTIQ movement in a way that makes me think he's not as likely to come for us the way he's been coming for immigrants and Muslims and women, but my fear is almost that LGBTIQ people will be left off easily relative to all of the other vulnerable groups that he is targeting for attack. So I can't say what will happen but I know that the only way the LGBTIQ community can move forward under a Trump administration is by working together with other communities. In the domestic context it means working with immigrants; it means working with Muslims; it means working with women's rights advocates and in an international context it means we have to have an anti-war agenda. So I think there's a lot that is very fluid right now and we're still trying to figure out which way is up.
OutRight Action International formerly known as the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission, has a twenty-five year history partnering with activists to produce hundreds of groundbreaking reports that expose discrimination and violence in both the public and private spheres globally. This December OutRight is sponsoring its 3rd annual UN Advocacy Week. During this time hundreds of international LGBTIQ activists come to New York for advocacy meetings with member states and agencies at the United Nations, including some governments that may not be receptive to human rights for LGBTIQ people at home. The week culminates on December 10th with OutSummit a one-day conference bringing together international and US-based activists for a day of panels and workshops on human rights relating to sexual orientation, gender identity and intersex issues that takes place at the City University of New York School of Law. They have created a special OUTTAKE VOICES discount code for our listeners. Just enter OutTakes into the promo code box and you can purchase a ticket for only $25 dollars as opposed to the normal price of $70.
For More Info: outsummit.org