• People around the world face violence and inequality – and sometimes torture, even execution – because of who they love, how they look, or who they are.

    Sexual orientation and gender identity are integral aspects of our selves and should never lead to discrimination or abuse.

    Human Rights Watch works for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people’s rights, with activists representing a multiplicity of identities and issues.

    We document and expose abuses based on sexual orientation and gender identity worldwide – including torture, killing and executions, arrests under unjust laws, unequal treatment, censorship, medical abuses, discrimination in health and jobs and housing, domestic violence, abuses against children, and denial of family rights and recognition.

    We advocate for laws and policies that will protect everyone’s dignity. We work for a world where all people can enjoy their rights fully.

    Photo: © The Rainbow Project, Namibia 2001.

  • A view of a document from The National Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission of Kenya's petition to the Kenyan High Court after being denied registration by the Non-Governmental Organisations Coordination Board. 

    Human rights groups, including lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights groups, should be able to register and carry out their work in Kenya, Human Rights Watch said today. 

Reports

LGBT Rights

  • Oct 10, 2014
    On October 11, National Coming Out Day around the world, lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people will seize the opportunity to speak about their coming out and the importance of equality and non-discrimination. Their visibility might inspire other LGBT people to throw open their closet door and start a life without hiding their sexual orientation. Often a coming out feels like a liberation for LGBT people. Many cannot imagine a life in secrecy and denial anymore.
  • Oct 9, 2014
  • Oct 2, 2014

    Human rights groups, including lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) rights groups, should be able to register and carry out their work in Kenya, Human Rights Watch said today. 

  • Oct 2, 2014
    Indonesia’s central government and the Aceh provincial government should take steps to repeal two Islamic bylaws in Aceh province that violate rights and carry cruel punishments, Human Rights Watch said today.
  • Oct 1, 2014
    Respect for freedom of expression should lead to dismissal of multiple lawsuits over a poster that shows two male cultural icons kissing.
  • Sep 26, 2014
    The UN Human Rights Council resolution passed on September 26, 2014, to combat violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity is a critically important achievement for upholding the principles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, 25 human rights and other groups said today. The new resolution follows a June 2011 resolution by the Human Rights Council that was the first by a UN body on human rights violations based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • Sep 25, 2014
    The International Olympic Committee (IOC) confirmation that future host city contracts will include an antidiscrimination requirement is an important step toward greater respect for human rights in global sport.
  • Sep 24, 2014

    The Malaysian government should urgently seek the repeal of all laws and regulations that discriminate against transgender people, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. 

  • Sep 23, 2014
  • Sep 22, 2014

    It is apt too that my country took the initiative at the UN Human Rights Council in 2011 by tabling a precedent-setting resolution on human rights, sexual orientation and gender identity. This resulted in a report on violence and discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people worldwide. A heated council debate on that report in 2012 made the simple point that LGBT rights are human rights, and should be part of the routine work of the council.