Stop LGBTI persecution in the Commonwealth

The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) will take place in the UK in April 2018. We urge the CHOGM 2018 organisers to:

  • Include lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and inter-sex (LGBTI) human rights on the main CHOGM agenda
  • Invite openly LGBTI people from the Commonwealth to address the CHOGM leaders. 

We appeal to all Commonwealth countries to:

  • Decriminalise same-sex relations
  • Prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation & gender identity
  • Enforce laws against threats & violence, to protect LGBTI people from hate crime
  • Consult and dialogue with LGBTI organisations

The Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) has never in its entire six-decade history discussed LGBTI human rights. The time has come. 

37 out of the 53 member countries of the Commonwealth criminalise same-sex relations. They account for half of the world's nations where homosexuality is illegal. Most of these countries inherited their anti-gay laws from Britain during the period of colonial rule; making these laws a hang-over from the colonial era.

At least nine of these 37 countries have a maximum sentence of life imprisonment for same-sex acts and there is the death penalty in parts of northern Nigeria and rural Pakistan. 

Hate crimes against LGBTI people often pass unchecked in most Commonwealth countries, with frequent mob violence. The majority of LGBTIs living in Commonwealth states have no legal protection against discrimination in employment, housing and the provision of goods and services. 

This makes a mockery of Commonwealth values and the Commonwealth Charter 2013. 

We urge CHOGM 2018 to lead the way in raising awareness of LGBTI rights as human rights and to act to remedy LGBTI rights abuses.  

Four out of five Commonwealth countries, which are signatories to the Charter, have failed to adhere to its principles and the Commonwealth has failed to ensure that these nations respect the human rights of their LGBTI citizens.

The criminalisation of LGBTI people in Commonwealth countries often goes hand-in-hand with other human rights violations, such as restrictions on free speech and the right to protest/strike, media censorship and discrimination against women and ethnic and faith minorities. 

We stand in solidarity with all Commonwealth citizens who are victims of human rights abuses. 


Care2 says:
Please sign the petition now to urge the leaders of Commonwealth Countries to discuss LGBTI rights at their upcoming meeting.


Petition supported by Peter Tatchell Foundation

Update #66 years ago
You are invited to RALLY outside Commonwealth HQ in London on Thursday 19 April 1-2pm during the summit of Commonwealth leaders. Protest against anti-LGBT+ laws in 36 out of 53 of Commonwealth nations. Please SHARE even if you can't ATTEND in person.
Update #56 years ago
WATCH our video of the petition hand-in here. Sincere appreciation to all of you who signed our petition urging an end to the criminalisation of LGBT people in 70% of Commonwealth nations. Thanks to you, we've raised the profile of LGBT rights ahead if this week's Commonwealth summit in London.

Best wishes, Edwin Sesange and Peter Tatchell.
Update #46 years ago
Your support for our Commonwealth petition has helped us massively increased the profile of LGBT rights ahead of this week's Commonwealth summit in London. It's now one of the top issues in all the delegate's minds. Bravo!

WATCH the video of the petition hand-in:

Join the London rally for LGBT equality in the Commonwealth this Thursday 19 April 1-2pm outside Commonwealth HQ. Info:

Best wishes
Update #36 years ago
We thank you for all the support towards the campaign to end the persecution of LGBTI people in the Commonwealth. We would like to let you know that we will be submitting this petition to the Commonwealth Secretariat HQ
On 11/04/18 time 12:30pm,
at Marlborough House, Pall Mall London SW1Y 5HX.

We are calling upon you once again to join the protest against sodomy laws in the Commonwealth on 19/04/18 time 13:00pm at the Commonwealth HQ in London.
Looking forward to seeing you.
Update #26 years ago
This is to let you know that we will be delivering this petition to the Commonwealth secretariat in London on 11/04/2018, however we still need more people to sign the petition.

Therefore I kindly beg you to invite or share this petition with your contacts such that they can also sign it. So far we need 6610 people to make it to 100000.

Once again thank you so much for the support. Please share the petition.
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