COVID-19 is generating complex challenges and risks and hits marginalised communities in our societies disproportionally hard, including LGBTI people who at a greater than average rate are unemployed, in precarious jobs, living on limited and unstable financial resources, or are homeless. Quarantine and lockdown measures have resulted in hugely increased rates of domestic violence, which also affects LGBTI people who are forced to quarantine with often unaccepting and discriminatory families and housemates. LGBTI people have lower health outcomes and access to healthcare due to stigma and discrimination. As the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights stated, “in countries where same-sex relations are criminalised or trans people targeted, they might not even seek treatment for fear of arrest or being subjected to violence”. The policing of emergency measures have already exposed LGBTI people to unequal treatment and discrimination by law enforcement officers. In addition complications at borders and in the implementation of lockdown measures are caused by disparities in the cross-border recognition of public documents, such as gender recognition certificates, registered partnership/marriage certificates and birth certificates, which impact LGBTI people and their families.
States need to ensure that measures adopted in the face of the pandemic as well as emergency support and compensation and socio-economic support measures leave no one behind, but take the particular vulnerability of the most marginalised in society into account, including specific vulnerabilities of parts of the LGBTI community. For policy proposals to address the above concerns, among others, please refer to ILGA-Europe’s briefing document below on the impacts of the Covid-19 crisis on LGBTI people.
- 20 April 2020 Open letter to President Ursula von der Leyen: keeping equality for all at the core amid the Covid-19 crisis
- Protect, Adapt and Rally: The ILGA-Europe three-part plan to support the LGBTI movement through the Covid-19 crisis
- Briefing document: The impacts of the Covid-19 crisis on LGBTI people
- Briefing document: Obligations of States in the field of human rights in the context of Covid-19
- Blog: Digital Security: How LGBTI Activists Can Safely Work Online