Media Advisory: Global LGBT Leaders to Speak Out at United Nations

Journalists Invited to Dec. 9 NYC Media Breakfast to Hear from Advocates on LGBT Rights in 20+ Countries

Contact: Suzanne Trimel, strimel@iglhrc.org, 212-430-6018
Or Roberta Sklar, 917-704-6358

(New York City)— The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) will host a breakfast for journalists on Dec. 9 in New York City to hear from global LGBT leaders who will be speaking out during the week of Dec. 7-12 on serious human rights concerns worldwide, including Cameroon, Colombia, Egypt, Jamaica, Russia, Taiwan, Tunisia, Ukraine and Zimbabwe, among others. Individual members of the delegation can be available for interviews with media throughout the week.

The 35 non-Western delegates arrive in New York City on Sat., Dec. 6, for a week of advocacy at the United Nations, where they will speak out on human rights abuses and concerns that are often ignored or aggressively silenced at home. The delegates will be meeting with U.N. diplomats and organizations to raise concerns from bullying and HIV/AIDS to transgender rights and violence and discrimination in housing, employment and education.

The media breakfast will take place at the Manhattan law offices of McDermott, Will & Emery, 340 Madison Ave., between 43rd and 44th streets, 14th floor, starting at 9 a.m. Immediately after, journalists will have an opportunity for one-on-one interviews with individual advocates. To RSVP or schedule an interview at another time, please contact Suzanne Trimel: STrimel@iglhrc.org or call: 212-430-6018

“These individuals are on the front lines of the global LGBT movement but they also bring unique perspectives as individuals in diverse communities,” said Jessica Stern, executive director of IGLHRC. “This is a chance to hear directly about their struggles, how they are standing up to protect human rights, what challenges they face and what allies can do to support their courageous work.”

Compelling Stories to Share

In addition to raising human rights concerns in their home countries, the advocates will share compelling stories about their individual lives and explore the role family plays in the lives of LGBT people around the world, along with themes of acceptance and family diversity.

For example, Isolda Atayde, a Mexican woman now living in the United States, will talk about the difficulties she faced as the parent of a trans daughter as she sought support but was rebuffed by teachers and doctors. Jennifer Lu of Taiwan, who runs an organization that works with the families of LGBT individuals, will provide insight into family concerns in her country.

DETAILS

WHAT: Media breakfast with global LGBT advocates in New York City; delegates from Cambodia, Cameroon, Colombia, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Egypt, Jamaica, Malaysia, Mexico, Nigeria, Palestine, Peru, Philippines, St. Lucia, Russia, South Africa, Taiwan, Tanzania, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, Zambia, Zimbabwe.

WHEN: 9 a.m. Tues., Dec. 9

WHERE: McDermott, Will & Emery, 340 Madison Ave., between 43rd and 44th streets, 14th floor

Human Rights Day Event Dec. 10 at U.N.

In addition to meetings with U.N. diplomats, some of the advocates will speak on Dec. 10, U.N.-designated Human Rights Day, at a special U.N. event hosted by the LGBT Core Group, a cross-regional group of member states, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the European Union, Human Rights Watch and IGLHRC. The Group is dedicated to advancing human rights protections for LGBT individuals. The theme of this year’s event is “Love is a Family Value.” (The event takes place 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the ECOSOC Chamber). Theresa Spark, executive director of the San Francisco Human Rights Commission and a transgender woman, will be among the speakers.

International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission

For nearly 25 years, the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission has been working hand-in-hand with activists in the Global South to support, strengthen, promote and expand the movement for a more just and safe world. IGLHRC is the only LGBT organization based in the United States that is dedicated solely to working with frontline activists who are seeking to change discriminatory laws, stop violence and promote human rights for everyone, everywhere. Founded in 1990, IGLHRC holds consultative status at the United Nations as a recognized NGO representing the concerns and human rights of lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender people worldwide.