Our work in Asia promotes acceptance of sexual and gender diversity at all levels of society. Our staff includes the regional coordinator from Malaysia who is based in the United States and a project coordinator based in the Philippines.
Several Asian countries— Myanmar, Malaysia, Pakistan, Singapore and Sri Lanka, among these—have laws criminalizing intimacy between same-sex couples. Even in countries without such laws, those who challenge sexual or gender norms confront state and community discrimination and violence. Through research that we coordinated in several countries, we have found that LGBTIQ people also face high levels of violence within their families. Many people cannot report violations and are forced to lead double lives and suffer in silence.
To increase access to justice and protections for LGBTIQ people, our staff is developing ways to track and ultimately change discriminatory laws, policies and practices. We monitor anti-discrimination bills as they are being drafted, push for inclusive language and implementation of laws prohibiting domestic violence, and develop legal and non-legal strategies to improve police responses and responses of human rights monitoring bodies.
We work to increase the visibility of Asian activists, respond to human rights emergencies, and actively bridge local, regional and international activism to achieve equality and justice.