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35+ years of activism & feminism in Fiji

Published

17 May 2019

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Fiji Women's Rights Movement

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NGOCHR PR: Protect LGBTQI Rights 17/05/19

NGOCHR PR: Protect LGBTQI Rights

17 May 2019

On this International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOTB), the NGO Coalition on Human Rights joins in solidarity to call for the protection of LGBTQI rights.

IDAHOTB is commemorated annually on May 17 to raise awareness on LGBTQI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning and intersex) rights violations, discrimination and stigma. The NGOCHR marched this morning as part of the Pride March organised by the LGBTQI community that took place from 8.30am at the Suva Flea Market to Sukuna Park in Suva.

“The NGOCHR supports the LGBTQI community in Fiji, the Pacific and globally in their rallying cry for justice and equality,” said NGOCHR Chair Nalini Singh.

“We need to promote a culture of equality, respect, inclusiveness and diversity that encompasses all Fijians. No one should be left behind. LGBTQI rights are human rights,” she said.

The 2013 Constitution prohibits discrimination against people on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity and gender expression but there do still exist barriers that limit the full recognition and protection of LGBTQI rights.

“We welcome the actions of the authorities and Government to approve the permit for this march, recognising the significance of the occasion. These actions of support to encourage and promote equality and acceptance is what we need from our leaders and Government,” said Ms. Singh.

 “In the same spirit, we hope that violence based on discrimination and lack of understanding against marginalised communities including LGBTQI is taken seriously and thoroughly investigated by police and authorities to ensure there is justice for all.

We urge our leaders to speak up against homophobia and hate speech when it happens in our communities and to encourage a society where there is equality, justice and respect for all human rights.”

ENDS.

 

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Members of the NGOCHR include the Fiji Women's Crisis Centre (FWCC), Fiji Women's Rights Movement, Citizens Constitutional Forum (CCF), FemLink Pacific and Ecumenical Centre for Research, Education and Advocacy (ECREA). Pacific Network on Globalization (PANG), Social Empowerment and Education Program (SEEP), Haus of Khameleon (HoK) and Diverse Voices and Action for Equality Fiji (DIVA) are observers.