22 February, 2020

Chiang Mai, Thailand

We express our anger because for too long a time, LGBTIQ+ communities have been systematically discriminated against, targeted with violence, denied of their human rights and fundamental freedoms, silenced or even removed from decision making spaces and processes.  Our daily realities of Injustice — the lack of agency and bodily autonomy, discriminatory laws, traditional or cultural practices, negative social attitudes, and rising fundamentalisms work in collusion with patriarchy to deny us our inherent human rights and dignity, deny the recognition of our families, criminalise, threaten, or kill us, and target us for our sexual orientations and gender identities. 

The exclusion from cis and heteronormative political, social, cultural and economic systems and structures, results into the violations of our human rights to physical and mental health, quality education, decent work opportunities, and basic social protection. We experience multiple and intersecting discriminations based on our age, gender, ethnicity, disability, socio-economic status or other grounds.  As queer women, we are further marginalised and experience violence like corrective rape because of our sexual orientation and gender identity.

Driven by our activism and commitment to human rights and belief in a just and equitable development, we support the call by Thai LGBTQI+ groups urging the Thailand Government to adopt anti-discrmination laws, policies and practices that promote, protect and realise the rights of LGBTQI+ people consistent with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Yogyakarta Principles, including:

  • Reform or repeal laws, regulations and policies that criminalise, stigmatise, discriminate against LGBTQI+ persons and LGBTQI+ families at all levels, and ensure social inclusion, representation, autonomy and agency.
  • Recognise and uphold transgender persons’ right to self-determination without any administrative and medical classifications.
  • Recognise LGBTQI+ families and amend laws to give them equal rights, access to public services and universal social protection including education, health, work, pension and other social security.
  • Ensure accessible, comprehensive and quality education that respects, promotes and protects LGBTIQ+ youth and children of LGBTIQ+ families grounded in international human rights standards.
  • Provide comprehensive, mandatory sexuality education at all levels that is: age-relevant, sex positive, LGBTQI+ inclusive, and scientifically accurate.
  • Uphold the economic rights of LGBTQI+, including youth,  by ensuring access to decent work, living wage and safe workplaces with zero tolerance for stigma, discrimination, physical, sexual or mental harassment and violence.
  • Ensure just and progressive taxation policies so the provision of these taxes can be used by the government towards robust and holistic public services that are accessible  and affordable to LGBTQI+ peoples and other marginalised communities.
  • Ensure LGBTQI+ people and their families are included in policies and programmes on climate change, disaster risk reduction congruent with practices of a feminist fossil fuel free future.
  • Set-up robust systems of data collection and actions to respond to the nature and extent of discriminations, violence and oppression faced by LGBTQI+ people.  
  • Transform all social and economic policies, programmes and budgets to ensure they are gender-responsive, feminist, human rights-based and participatory, and all decisions making processes around their review, implementation and monitoring ensure the participation of the LGBTQI+ people.

We express our solidarity with LGBTQI+ rights defenders who face threats and attacks for the work that they do; and they are here with us tonight. We want you to know, you are not alone in this fight. Only through our collective movement power and solidarity, we can shift the power relations and reclaim our sovereign power, dignity and human rights.  We take this opportunity to invite you to join us for a Women’s Global Strike on International Women’s Day in Chiang Mai on 8th March with your demands for equal rights. LGBTQI+ Rights are Human Rights! Long live international feminist solidarity!