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Country Overview

China

At a glance

Same-sex Relations for Men Legal Throughout the Country?

Yes

Same-sex Relations for Women Legal Throughout the Country?

Yes

Legal Gender Recognition Possible?

Yes

LGBTI Orgs Able to Register?

No

Actions Related to SOGI at the UN:

2016: Opposed IE SOGI

2019: Opposed IE SOGI

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The official policy towards LGBTIQ people in China can be described as “don’t encourage, don’t discourage, don’t promote.” Over the past decade, the Chinese government has increasingly clamped down on its citizens’ human rights more broadly, particularly restricting freedom of expression, assembly, and the press. As a result, LGBTIQ organizations and activists have also faced intimidation and violence by security services. China’s Cybersecurity Law, which bans the dissemination of information disruptive to the “social order,” criminalizes the distribution of information for and about the LGBTIQ community. As a result, it has been challenging for LGBTIQ groups, and, indeed, civil society more broadly, to organize. Since China stopped prosecuting gay men under hooliganism laws in the 1990’s, government officials have largely stayed silent on the issue of the human rights of LGBTIQ people - even as LGBTIQ activists push for recognition and equality. Traditional cultural values and family units are emphasized in China, which contributes to the social ostracization of and discrimination against LGBTIQ people. So-called “conversion clinics” offering “conversion therapy” for sexual orientation and gender identity reorientation operate fairly freely, and there is strong family pressure for LGBTIQ people to undergo these harmful “treatments.”

Global Impact

Sub-Saharan Africa

Outright supports LGBTIQ organizations in Sub-Saharan Africa and works with mainstream human rights organizations to respect human rights and influence positive changes in laws, policies, attitudes, and beliefs that cause discrimination against LGBTIQ people on the continent.

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United Nations

Our work at the United Nations centers around advocating for the advancement of the rights of LGBTIQ people.

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Asia

Our work in Asia promotes acceptance of sexual and gender diversity at all levels of society.

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Middle East and North Africa

In the Middle East and North Africa, we partner with local groups in various countries as part of our international solidarity work. We also work with our local partners on different topics through capacity building, advocacy, research and holistic security.



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Europe and Central Asia

Outright International partners with activists to fight for an end to human rights violations based on sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression in Europe and Central Asia, where most of our work involves emergency responses to harassment, discrimination, violence and most recently, Russia’s brutal and expanded invasion of Ukraine.

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Americas

Our work in the Americas continues to build on the fundamental and positive transformation of human rights protections in recent years. We partner with groups in the Caribbean that focus on ending gender-based violence and eradicating discrimination against trans people.

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Pacific

Our work in the Pacific aims to increase visibility of activists, respond to human rights emergencies, and actively bridge local, regional and international activism to achieve equality and justice.

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Human Rights Research

Since 1990, we have partnered with activists from all over the world to produce hundreds of groundbreaking reports.

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