Pride in London 2022 - Diplomats for Equality London joint statement
42 Heads of Diplomatic Missions in the UK join together as Diplomats for Equality London and reaffirm their commitment to defend and advance the human rights of LGBTI+ persons.
We, the undersigned Heads of Diplomatic Missions in the United Kingdom, join together as Diplomats for Equality London to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the UK’s first Pride march in 1972.
We reaffirm that the rights of LGBTI+ persons are fundamental human rights, and that we are committed to championing these rights internationally and supporting those who defend them.
Everyone, everywhere, should be free to express who they are and love who they love. The strongest, safest and most prosperous societies are those in which everyone can live freely, without fear of violence or discrimination, and where all citizens are treated fairly and can play a full and active part in society.
We are at a crossroads in the history of the rights of LGBTI+ persons and more needs to be done, in every part of the world, to help ensure LGBTI+ persons feel safe and are treated equally throughout society. It is now more important than ever that we stand up for the human rights of all people.
We are deeply concerned that over 70 jurisdictions still criminalise consensual same-sex acts and that more than 10 of them punish this with the death penalty. Furthermore, transgender people are particularly vulnerable to arrest, prosecution and harassment under a range of laws. At least 15 jurisdictions criminalise gender expression and/or identity through ‘cross-dressing’ and disguise laws. In at least two dozen countries, authorities use public order, vagrancy and misdemeanour offences to harass, arrest and prosecute transgender people. COVID-19 has highlighted gaps in equality and exacerbated existing vulnerabilities, including bias and social stigma, discrimination, economic impact and the risk of violence and domestic parental violence, as well as reducing access to health services.
We will continue to shed light on these and other injustices, and will continue advocating for everyone, regardless of who they are or whom they love, to be protected and included.
Across our borders, we remain committed to urging the international community to eradicate discrimination, including based on sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, and to promote diversity and inclusion.
We urge countries to decriminalise consensual same-sex relations and to introduce or amend legislation to protect LGBTI+ persons from all forms of discrimination: tackling hate speech, violence and harassment, both online and offline; promoting inclusive access to public services; strengthening the economic case for inclusion; banning so-called conversion therapies; and increasing the participation of LGBTI+ persons in all spheres of life.
We pay tribute to and support the courageous advocacy efforts carried out by grassroots human rights defenders, activists, journalists, media workers and civil society organisations to raise awareness about the issues affecting LGBTI+ persons and human rights violations they may face worldwide.
We hope that you will join our efforts, throughout the year, to make London’s diplomatic community a more inclusive community for all. We must stand united in celebrating diversity and the resilience of the LGBTI+ community and in defending and promoting human rights, inclusiveness and justice for all.