Pride of the LGBTI community
Pride of the LGBTI community
Over the past 50 years, the conversation about lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer individuals in the United States has shifted from resilience in the face of intolerance to pride in a culture of acceptance. June is LGBTI Pride Month in the United States. It is a time when Americans commemorate the 1969 Stonewall Uprising, an event that sparked the modern LGBTI rights movement, and highlights LGBTI rights as human rights. On June 28, 1969, patrons of the Stonewall Inn who were tired of constant harassment and abuse from police in New York City finally fought back. While accounts of the night vary, the uprising ignited a national firestorm and inspired widespread activism in support of LGBTI rights. After more than four decades of fighting for equal rights, the movement reached a milestone in 2015, when the United States Supreme Court recognized the rights of same-sex couples to marry. Today, Pride Month is celebrated by millions around the world, with parades, lectures, parties, workshops, and concerts. It is also a time to honor those LGBTI individuals who have been lost to crimes motivated by bigotry, and advocate for those in the over 70 countries who are still persecuted for who they are, some with the threat of execution. While Pride events occur year-round, Pride Month is an opportunity to celebrate the LGBTI people who have changed the course of history to promote visibility of LGBTI individuals in the fabric of society and to continue the dialogue about LGBTI rights as human rights and the struggle that continues around the world today.
Global Equity Fund
The Global Equality Fund (GEF) is a leading public-private partnership comprised of like-minded governments and private sector entities dedicated to protecting and defending the human rights and fundamental freedoms of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) persons around the world. Through the GEF, governments, companies, foundations, and NGOs work collaboratively to support local initiatives spearheaded by human rights defenders and civil society organizations working to affirm a consistent global message that LGBTI persons are entitled to the same human rights and fundamental freedoms as everyone, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or sex characteristics.
Funded by governments and the private sector, and managed by the Department of State’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, the Global Equality Fund provides emergency assistance to individuals and organizations under threat or attack, small grants for short-term, high-impact projects, and long-term technical assistance grants that build the capacity of CSOs working to advance the human rights of LGBTI persons in over 90 countries worldwide.
Mechanisms for assistance include small grants, emergency protection, and capacity building and technical assistance. Individuals and organizations supported through GEF grants can be found working toward:
- Protecting persons or groups against the threat of violence
- Advocating against discriminatory laws that criminalize LGBTI status
- Ending explicit and implicit forms of discrimination, in the workplace, housing, education, and other public institutions
- Building community awareness and support for the human rights of LGBTI persons
The Department continues to pursue partnerships with foreign governments, foundations, and corporations in this important effort. For more information or to apply for assistance, please visit the GEF website at: https://www.state.gov/global-equality-fund/.