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Country Overview

New Zealand

At a glance

Same-sex Relations for Men Legal Throughout the Country?


Same-sex Relations for Women Legal Throughout the Country?


Legal Gender Recognition Possible?


LGBTI Orgs Able to Register?


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In New Zealand, also known as Aotearoa, laws and public opinion about LGBTIQ people are generally positive, but more progress could be made. In 2013, New Zealand became the first country in the Asia Pacific to legalize same-sex marriage. New Zealand also included sexual orientation as a protected ground against discrimination in the Human Rights Act of 1993, and transgender people can change their legal gender markers without surgery. Conversion therapy is illegal as of 2022. There have been numerous openly LGBTIQ elected officials. The first openly transgender woman to compete in the Olympics was also from New Zealand. Takatāpui is a te reo Māori word now used as an umbrella term to describe people of diverse sexual orientations, gender identities, and gender expressions. Other Māori identities for sexual and gender minorities include whakawahine, irawhiti, tāhine (or ira tāhūrua-kore), irahuri, irakē, tangata ira wahine, and tangata ira tāne. Surveys suggest that New Zealanders are generally supportive of LGBTIQ people. However, discrimination and violence still occur, and hate speech is an issue online and offline. 


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.

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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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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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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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Our work in the Pacific aims to increase the 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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