Statement from the United Nations in Thailand on the 2015 International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOT)

In commemoration of the 2015 International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (May 17), the United Nations in Thailand recognises the important progress that has been made in Thailand in protecting the human rights and dignity of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people.

In 2011, Thailand voted for a UN Resolution on combating all forms of discrimination and violence against individuals because of their sexual orientation and gender identity. Recent policy developments, such as the Gender Equality Bill and the 2012 Social Welfare Act, have also given broader attention in Thailand to equality and sexual diversity, particularly for transgender people. These positive developments recognise and affirm that LGBTI persons in Thailand can fully participate in all aspects of public life, and are entitled to claim their human rights, which is especially important for young people.

Thailand is now debating the declaration and recognition of people of sexual diversity in its constitution, and has the opportunity to become a leader in Asia in advancing marriage equality for LGBTI persons. Still, many LGBTI people in Thailand face stigma in society. They are overlooked when seeking employment, and discriminated in schools, health services, communities and families. These challenges constrain the lives of these individuals, and reduce the prospects for sustainable development in Thailand.

It is enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. On this day, and always, the United Nations stands with the people of Thailand in their efforts to fight against violence due to discrimination of any kind, and ensure the human rights and dignity for all, regardless of one’s gender identity or sexual orientation.