The United States is committed to promoting the human rights of all human beings and stands against the persecution and marginalization of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender, or LGBT, persons worldwide. That is why, in a landmark event, the U.S. has appointed its first ever Special Envoy for the Human Rights of LGBT persons Randy Berry.
“We have a moral obligation to promote societies that are more just, fair and tolerant,” said U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry:
“It is the right thing to do. But make no mistake: It’s also a strategic necessity. Greater protection of human rights leads to greater stability, prosperity, tolerance, inclusivity, and it is not a question of occasionally – always this is what happens.”
All over the world, LGBT communities face discriminatory laws and practices that attack their dignity, undermine their safety and violate their human rights.
“Many LGBT people continue to be harassed, arrested, killed simply because of who they are or who they love. That’s unacceptable. And we believe it has to change.”
The U.S. is not alone in this belief. Governments and civil societies in many regions are joining the fight for the human rights of LGBT persons. The U.S. will help build on that progress, said Special Envoy Barry, furthering what former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton referred to as a “constellation of conversations”:
“These conversations have been occurring and must continue to occur with our friends, with our allies, with those who see things differently than we do, and most importantly with those who reject the notion that we are dealing with a fundamental human rights issue. Some of those conversations are going to be simpler and easier than others; some will be extraordinarily difficult and direct. But they must and they will occur.”
“It will take the entirety of our efforts to see progress,” said Special Envoy Berry. “And I look forward with enthusiasm, with hope, with optimism, and with commitment to working with you to build a more positive future.”