Developing Countries: LGBT+ People

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office written question – answered on 4th July 2022.

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Photo of David Mundell David Mundell Conservative, Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to help tackle the criminalisation of same-sex relationships in Commonwealth countries; whether her Department has made funding available to LGBT+ organisations which work to tackle that legislation in those countries in the last year; and if she will take steps to make the UK a leading funder of those organisations.

Photo of Vicky Ford Vicky Ford Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)

As Commonwealth Chair-in-Office, the UK committed over £11 million in programmes to support the promotion and protection of LGBT+ rights across the Commonwealth, including through partners such as The Commonwealth Equality Network, Human Dignity Trust and Kaleidoscope Trust.

Since CHOGM 2018, UK funding has facilitated the provision of technical assistance and capacity building to eight Commonwealth countries seeking to repeal or reform legislation that discriminates on the grounds of sex, sexual orientation or gender identity. This is extremely sensitive work, often conducted discreetly due to political, social and cultural sensitivities.

On 24 June, the Prime Minister announced £2.7 million of new UK funding to support the vital work of LGBT+ grassroots human rights defenders. We will continue to work closely with like-minded countries and civil society organisations to defend the human rights of LGBT+ people, and advance equality and freedom across the Commonwealth.

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