Date of Meeting: 10 Dec 2015

Meeting Organizer: LGBT Core Group, Free & Equal – United Nations for LGBT Equality

ISJC Staff Present: Robert Docter

Reporter: Robert Docter

Which SDG does this topic cover? 5, 16

Type of meeting: Event at UN Trusteeship in respect to Human Rights Day 

Brief summary of presentation of information made

Panelists focused on LGBT discrimination and exclusion from the business, State, and civil society – centering on economic costs from the discrimination.                          

MODERATOR: Marcus Mabry – Head, U.S. Curation, Twitter Moments

PRESENTERS: The following points were made by the presenters

Mogens Lykketoft, President of the General Assembly

  • Member states can’t prohibit human rights.
  • LGBT youth at greater risk for bullying, violence, and skipping school – where 1/3 have skipped school at some point due to fear.
  • There are 76 countries that currently have laws in place that contributes to LGBT exclusion – purposeful laws that give LGBT peoples less rights and opportunity.

Dan Bross, Senior director of Business and Corporate Responsibility, Microsoft

  • Challenges States and corporations to be inclusive; Implementing inclusion with its (1) mission, (2) values, and (3) leadership.
  • Executives and leaders from corporations, States, and civil societies need to reach out to other leaders for best means and communication when implementing inclusiveness.
  • The World Economic Forum next year is including workshops for LGBT inclusiveness – businesses like Bross’ Microsoft understand the importance, and with the topic of the meeting, the importance of it economically and financially.  
  • He went into detail about the importance of inclusiveness at Microsoft, and the trend in other large companies doing the same.  

James Heintz, Prof. of Economics, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

  • States and companies that actively discriminate LGBT at work, jobs, conditions, and service often are on the lowest rates of productivity.
  • Policing LGBT communities has tremendous costs.
  • States, corporations, and sectors of the service society who actively discriminate don’t receive as much resources and trust – and hurt them financially.

Kasha Jacqueline, Director, Freedom and Roam, Uganda

  • There is a tremendous loss of potential due to LGBT exclusion – happening prevalently in Uganda.
  • With the NGOs helping LGBT populations in Uganda, they have to be careful due to an NGO Act that blacklists NGOs supporting the LGBT community.
  • Simply, discrimination limits and halts development. This discrimination loses credibility and trust to the world.
  • She provided her perspective and life as a Lesbian living in Uganda – where due to her fame for protesting for LGBT rights, she’s subject to violence and harm. 

What was of particular significance to share with The Salvation Army globally?

  • In economically affluent countries groups including companies, non-profits, States, and sectors of the civil society increasingly value inclusiveness, and when it is absent, there is a loss of trust and support.
  • The Salvation Army also works in countries with more conservative, traditional views. There are so-called “NGO Acts” or restrictions limiting the provision of support to LGBT communities. Awareness of State restrictions can ensure programmes are safe. 

Web links for more information

Free and Equal, UN for LGBT Equality

Tags: United Nations, SDG16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions, SDG8: Decent Work and Economic Growth, SDG5: Gender Equality