Being part of family is a fundamental human condition as well as a human right. All of us long to feel at home with the families of our birth, in the families of our choosing, and in the families we raise. Equally, we all have the right to live safely within the cultures and countries in which we are raised. But being truly “at home” remains out of reach for many LGBT* people around the world. Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people routinely face discrimination and exclusion from their families, cultures or even home countries. In celebration of the International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOT), the World Bank and the Salzburg Global LGBT* Forum joined forces to call for inclusion and equality for families and their LGBT* children around the world.
The Salzburg Global LGBT* Forum, formed in collaboration with its Founder and Chair Dr. Klaus Mueller and the Salzburg Global Seminar, was established in 2013 to advance equal rights for LGBT* people around the world. The Forum currently includes members from more than 70 countries, facilitating an open dialogue on critical issues facing the LGBT* community worldwide.
For three years, the Forum has led the project “Family is…?” and for its fifth anniversary in 2017, Forum founder and chair Mueller unveiled the short film Family is…? - A Global Conversation to coincide with this year’s IDAHOT theme of “Family”. The film weaves together personal testimonies from Forum members from more than 25 countries, that are also, in full, shown on the Forum's website.
During the Forum, via video, Clifton Cortez, Salzburg Global Fellow and the World Bank’s Global Adviser for Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (SOGI), and Ulrich Zachau, World Bank Country Director for Southeast Asia, shared insights into the World Bank’s research on economic inclusion of LGBTI groups.