LGBTI activists are telling their stories about countries which still criminalize homosexuality for Digital Pride.
Right now, 71 countries make gay – and sometimes lesbian – sex illegal. And that’s not including the many more which persecute or discriminate against the LGBTI community.
For Digital Pride this week, we are sharing a series of short videos where activists from Nigeria, Sri Lanka, Kenya and Malaysia tell their stories.
All of their countries make homosexual sex illegal. Worse still, in Northern Nigeria, Sharia Law punishes homosexual acts with death by hanging.
But in the videos, the activists explain it’s not usually about the courts punishing LGBTI people. Instead, it’s often a case of police or mobs taking the law into their own hands.
What the activists say
Rosanna Flamer-Caldera of Equal Ground in Sri Lanka is one of the activists sharing her story. She told us:
‘Especially gay men, transgender women, sometimes lesbians, they are stopped on the street, accosted by the police. Money is extorted, sexual favours are extorted, they are blackmailed.
‘If they refuse this, they are dragged off to the police station, locked up and sometimes raped. I had an incident where one of my colleagues in a remote area was raped by 14 police officers.’
While Nigerian gay activist Reverend Jide Macaulay, the founder of House of Rainbow, said:
‘There are so many examples where people take the law into their own hands. They call it “jungle justice” in Nigeria. If they know you are gay or lesbian, bisexual or transgender, your life begins to crumble in front of you.’
We’ll be putting their stories out on videos throughout Digital Pride week. Meanwhile you can see some of the highlights here:
Join our Digital Pride Thunderclap for global LGBTI rights
We believe all LGBTI people deserve equality, respect and protection. It shouldn’t matter where you live – our rights should be universal.
If you agree, you can lend us your social reach for just one post on your Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr.
If you sign up for our Digital Pride Thunderclap, you will join the likes of Amnesty International, Peter Tatchell Foundation, All Out and many more in broadcasting this message, all at the same time:
‘All LGBTI+ people deserve freedom, equality and protection. I am one of Millions of Us fighting for this world.’
The Thunderclap will go out on 26 April at 17:00 London time. If you sign up, it won’t give us access to your account. And it only broadcasts this message, nothing else.
You can sign up in a few clicks right here.
So far, the Thunderclap has a forecast reach of over 31 million but we can still make it even bigger with your help.