Special Event on “Love is a Family Value: Supporting All Families and Family Members”

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10-Dec-2014 01:42:31
Hundreds of LGBT activists and UN diplomats gathered to celebrate Human Rights Day at the UN with a particular focus: The role of families and LGBT people

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LGBT people play a variety of family roles, whether as sons and daughters, brothers and sisters, parents, cousins or other family members. While for many, family ties provide a vitals source of strenght and stability, too many LGBT people experience rejection, even violence, at the hands of their own families.

The International Human Rights Day is celebrated every year on 10 December to highlight the date of when the General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. Deputy Secretary General Eliasson reminded the audience about Article 1 of the Declaration: All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.

In the panel, Theresa Sparks from Human Rights Commission, laid out the sad facts about LGBT people: They are more prone to be homeless, rejected by their families, commit suicide, be poor or be victims of violence and discrimination. Still, LGBT people are increasingly accepted and there has been a positive development during the last 20 years.

The singer-songwriter Mary Lambert told her personal story about how she grew up in a religious family, how she struggled to accept being lesbian and how she found pop music to be a way of expressing political messages.

Other members of the panel were Reverent and Senior Religion and Sexuality researcher, Kapya Kaoma from Zambia and Kenita Placide, an activist and co-Executive Director of United & Strong from St. Lucia. They both shared engaging and inspiring stories from their personal and professional lives. Thomas Roberts, journalist at MSNBC as well as LGBT-activist, moderated the event.
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