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Gender issues

The foreign policy on gender issues promotes an agenda guided by values such as gender equality, empowerment of women, economic inclusion, recognition of sexual and reproductive rights, and combating violence against women.

Brazilian diplomacy actively seeks to strengthen international regimes to protect children, adolescents, and the elderly. At the OAS, the adoption of an Inter-American Convention on the Rights of Older People is under negotiation. The Brazilian Government also seeks to advance the debate on a Convention on older people at the UN.

Brazil  attaches great importance to the implementation of the Durban Declaration and Program of Action against Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia, and Related Intolerance. It supports CELAC's Decade of Latin-American and Caribbean Afro-Descendants and  works to promote racial equality and  to the fight against racism in regional and multilateral fora.

Brazilian diplomacy has also contributed to mobilize the international community in fighting violence against Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, Transvestites, Transsexuals, and Transgender People (LGBT). Following a Brazilian initiative, in 2013, the OAS General Assembly adopted the Inter-American Convention against All Forms of Discrimination and Intolerance. At the UN, we have urged the Human Rights Council (HRC) to promote and protect the rights of LGBT people.

Since 2007, Brazil has been committed to implementing the International Convention on the rights of Persons with Disabilities and to promoting their social inclusion. Brazilian diplomacy strives for new advances in the area, such as the signature of the Marrakesh Treaty to Facilitate Access to Published Works for Blind, Visually Impaired or Otherwise Print Disabled persons.


Brazil's actions in promoting the international rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people

2003, Geneva – Brazil presented the draft resolution 'Human Rights and Sexual Orientation' to the United Nations Human Rights Council. It was the first attempt to address violence and discrimination against LGBT persons at the multilateral level. Despite Brazil's efforts, the initiative did not gain the necessary support to continue, at that time, within the scope of the UN Commission of Human Rights.

2005, Washington – The Organization of American States created the 'Working Group to Prepare a Draft  of the Inter-American Convention  against Racism and all forms of Discrimination and Intolerance', which resulted in the adoption  of the 'Inter-American Convention against All Forms of Discrimination and Intolerance'. Brazil headed the working group for three consecutive years and included in the draft Convention express reference to the prohibition of sexual and gender-based discrimination

November 2006, Geneva – During the third session of the Human Rights Council, Brazil supported a joint intervention on the fight against sexual and gender-based violence.

August 2007, Montevideo – Brazil took part in the Regional Seminar on Sexual Diversity and Gender Identity, held within the 9th Meeting of Mercosur High-Ranking Officials (RAADDHH for its name in Spanish).

2007, New York – Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay, in conjunction with organizations from civil society, co-hosted at the United Nations headquarters in New York the launch of the Yogyakarta Principles, which outline the application of international human rights law in relation to LGBTI persons.

November 2007, Montevideo – Brazil took part, within the 10th Meeting of Mercosur High-Ranking Officials (RAADHH), of the first meeting of the Sexual Diversity and Gender Identity Subgroup of the Working Group on Discrimination, Racism and Xenophobia. The working subgroup convened during all RAADDHH meetings until it was elevated to the category of Working Group, in 2009.

June 2008, Washington – The General Assembly of the Organization of American States approved, in its 38th round of sessions, the resolution 'Human Rights and Sexual Orientation', presented by the Brazilian delegation. The document was the first resolution on the rights of LGBTI persons to be adopted by a multilateral organization. Since then, Brazil has resubmitted the resolution annually, with steady improvements in  its content and language.

October 2008, New York – During the commemorations of the 60th Anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Brazil and other 66 countries presented the 'Declaration on Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity' at the UN General Assembly plenary meeting.

September 2009, Montevideo – Brazil took part in the first meeting of the Working Group on Sexual Identity and Diversity, within the 16th Meeting of Mercosur High-Ranking Officials (RAADHH). The new working group resulted from the elevation of the Subgroup on Sexual Diversity and Gender Identity, which was previously under the Working Group on Discrimination, Racism and Xenophobia, and conveys at every RAADHH meeting.

September 2010, Geneva – Brazil and other 12 countries co-hosted the High Level Panel on 'Ending violence and criminal sanctions on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity'. The event took place on the sidelines of the 15th Session of the UN Human Rights Council and featured the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navi Pillay. Brazil also supported a joint intervention on the fight against violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

March 2011, Geneva – During the 16th Session of the Human Rights Council, Brazil supported a joint intervention on the fight against violence based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

June 2011, Geneva – The United Nations Human Rights Council approved in its 17th Session the resolution 17/19, entitled 'Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity'. Brazil joined the 'core group' of the resolution (a group of countries that drafts and submits a resolution), which was adopted by 23 votes in favor, 19 votes against and 3 abstentions. The document is the first formal reference of a United Nations multilateral body on the subject.

November 2011, Washington – In the context of its 143rd Session, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights created, with the support of Brazil and other countries, a specialized Unit on the Rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex persons, within its Executive Secretariat. The Unit operated until 2014, when it was replaced by the rapporteurship on the same theme.

March 2012, Geneva – On the occasion of the 19th Session of the Council of Human Rights on the rights of LGBT persons, Brazil held a side event, which was attended by Irina Karka Bacchim, then Vice-President of the National Council on the Fight against Discrimination against LGBT persons.

April 2013, Brasília – The 'Regional Seminar on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity' was held in conjunction with the 'Brazil-European Union Seminar on the Fight against Homophobic Violence'.  The event is part of a strategy developed by Brazil, South Africa and Norway – the 'core group' countries on the rights of LGBT persons,   within the UN Council of Human Rights – aimed at promoting regional seminars to draw attention to the adoption of a new resolution on the subject.

April 2013, Oslo – Brazil takes part at the 'International Conference on Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity'. The Conference final report was submitted to the twenty-third session of the Council of Human Rights.

June 2013, Guatemala – The 43rd OAS General Assembly adopted the Inter-American Convention against All Forms of Discrimination and Intolerance. Brazil was one of the first signatories of the document. Once it becomes effective, it will be the first legally binding international document condemning discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, identity and gender.

September 2013, New York – Brazil took part in the Ministerial Meeting of the 'Core Group' on the Rights of LGBT persons. The event, co-hosted by Argentina, the United States, France and the Netherlands, was held on the sidelines of the opening of the 68th Session of the United Nations General Assembly.

February 2014, Washington – Brazil supports the establishment of the Rapporteurship on the Rights of LGBTI persons within the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.

September 2014, Geneva – The United Nations Human Rights Council approved in its 27th Session the resolution 27/32, entitled 'Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity'. Brazil, Chile, Uruguay and Colombia joined the 'core group'. The resolution was approved by 25 votes in favor, 14 votes against and 7 abstentions.

September 2014, New York – At the UN headquarters Brazil participated in the ministerial-level meeting 'Ending Human Rights Violations Against LGBT People'. The event took place on the margins of the opening of the 69th Session of the General Assembly and was co-hosted by Brazil, the European Union and the Netherlands. On the occasion, Brazil expressed its support to the launch of the 'Free and Equal' Global Campaign against Homophobia.

December 2014, Paris – Brazil took part in the 'UNESCO's work to protect the right to education of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) children and young people'. The event was held at the UNESCO headquarters on the occasion of the International Human Rights Day.

July 2015, Brasília – During the Mercosur High-Ranking Officials Meeting (RAADHH), the LGBT Working Group was elevated to Permanent Commission, raising its profile and adopting a plan of work with specific objectives and targets.

September 2015, New York – Brazil took part in the high-level event 'Leaving no One Behind: Equality and Inclusion in the Post-2015 Development Agenda', on the sidelines of the opening of the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly at the UN headquarters. Brazil, Argentina, Australia, Chile, Colombia, Croatia, El Salvador, the United States, France, Israel, the European Union, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Montenegro and Japan co-hosted the event, which also had the support from the Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, Ivan Sinonovic. The event reaffirmed, at the highest level, the commitment to advancing with the LGBT agenda within the scope of discussions on the Post-2015 Development Agenda. 

 

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