Resolution on: Securing LGBTI Rights

published 19 September 2019 updated 3 April 2023

The 8th Education International (EI) World Congress meeting in Bangkok, Thailand, from 21st to 26th July 2019 notes:

(1) The central purpose of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is to end poverty for all by 2030;

(2) Trade unions and civil rights organisations secured the global commitment across national governments to ‘leave no one behind’;

(3) The work of the joint EI/PSI LGBTI Forum as a formidable global alliance for progressing LGBTI rights.

Congress further notes:

(4) LGBTI people have been systematically left behind as a result of national and international policies, programmes, discriminatory laws, and the failure to challenge deeply entrenched and negative social attitudes;

(5) LGBTI people on average experience lower income, worse health, less education;

(6) Teachers and students experience bullying, harassment and exclusion because they are (or are perceived to be) LGBTI;

(7) Many young people drop out of education because of homophobia, biphobia and transphobia;

(8) Many teachers are unable to be out in the workplace and are forced to hide their LGBTI status;

(9) LGBTI discrimination, victimisation and hatred has a profound, lifelong and adverse impact on the health, well-being, careers and life-chances of teachers and students;

(10) Development programmes can reinforce the inequalities that LGBTI people face, especially women, or where programmes are not trans-inclusive;

(11) Despite worldwide gains in securing the decriminalisation of homosexuality and same-sex relations, progress is slow and 72 countries continue to persecute and criminalise LGBTI people.

Congress believes:

(12) All teachers and students should be free to teach and learn in a safe and inclusive environment that respects LGBTI rights;

(13) All schools, colleges and universities should be committed to respecting and promoting human rights for all, including LGBTI rights;

(14) Ending poverty by securing the SDGs is not possible without a clear and equal commitment to ending discrimination and exclusion of LGBTI people in education and in society;

(15) Governments, development organisations and other civil society organisations must ensure that LGBTI rights are addressed explicitly as part of programmes and projects to achieve the United Nations SDGs in 2030.

(16) LGBTI rights are human rights and therefore a legitimate trade union issue that should be championed throughout the global trade union movement.

(17) Congress resolves that the EI Executive Board will take action to:

(i) Support member organisations in providing information, support and training to challenge homophobia, biphobia and transphobia;

(ii) Highlight the need for global and national actions to ensure that all teaching curricula are LGBTI-inclusive;

(iii) Include LGBTI equality in all campaigns for the right to quality education for all children, young people and adults;

(iv) Assess the impact of the EI programme and budget to maximise EI’s contribution to securing LGBTI equality;

(v) Press EI’s development co-operation partners to ensure that their programmes are fully LGBTI-inclusive;

(vi) Actively support LGBTI campaigning organisations such as International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA) and its member organisations in securing equal rights for LGBTI people around the world;

(vii) Highlight the need for national and local actions to ensure schools are safe environments for LGBTI teachers and students.