Report-back from Geneva: A Message from Jessica Stern

Report-back from Geneva: UN Reviews Treaty Compliance on Human Rights


“Not your Grandma’s CEDAW,” is what a friend wrote on my Facebook wall when I referenced a recent meeting to evaluate Chile’s compliance with an international treaty condemning violence against women.

There was a time when lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people were ignored by international treaties and international law generally. Not so any more.

In October, IGLHRC partnered with 6 Chilean LGBT organizations for the review of Chile by the Committee for the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), 5 Turkish LGBT organizations for the Human Rights Committee’s review of Turkey, and a whopping 40 Filipino LGBT organizations on the Human Rights Committee’s review of the Philippines.

Our work was rewarded. In the committees’ concluding observations,

View our photo albums and remarks of Sevval Kilic of Istanbul LGBTT (Turkey); Andres Rivera Duarte of Organización de Transexuales por la Dignidad de la Diversidad (Chile); Jonas Bagas of TLF Share (Philippines); and Ging Cristobal, IGLHRC’s Project Coordinator for Asia (Philippines) who testified to the conditions for LGBT people in their countries.

Today, my grandmother knows that CEDAW condemns homophobia and transphobia. And IGLHRC is committed to working with you and LGBT communities worldwide to ensure that by tomorrow, everyone’s grandmother knows that human rights are for everyone, everywhere.

With warmth and solidarity,

Jessica Stern
Executive Director