United Nations: Mandate of Independent Expert on violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity renewed

published 13 July 2019 updated 18 November 2019

The United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC) adopted a resolution to renew the mandate of the Independent Expert focusing on protection against violence and discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI).

At its meeting on 12 July 2019, the resolution was adopted with a recorded vote (27 in favour and 12 against, with 7 abstentions).The countries that voted against were: Afghanistan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, China, Egypt, Eritrea, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia and the countries that abstained were: Angola, Burkina Faso, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Hungary, India, Senegal, Togo.

In October, in a joint statement, the Independent Expert on SOGI, Victor Madrigal-Borloz together with the Special Rapporteur on the right to education, Kombou Boly Barry, expressed their grave concern about bullying, harassment and exclusion of LGBT people at schools, universities and other educational institutions. They also stated that implicit violence also takes place through discriminatory education policies, regulations, curricula, teaching materials, and teaching practices. The Independent Expert also presented a report to the UN General Assembly on 24 October addressing the issue of bullying and harassment of LGBT students.

Since 2016 the UN Independent Expert on SOGI is tasked with assessing the implementation of existing international human rights law, by discussing with States, and working collaboratively with other UN agencies including UNESCO and ILO and other regional mechanisms to address violence and discrimination.