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Boris Dittrich(March 2011)

In this podcast Boris Dittrich from Netherlands talks about attending the human rights conference.

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In this podcast recorded at Wellington Town Hall, Boris Dittrich, from the Netherlands and serving as the advocacy director for the LGBT Rights Programme at Human Rights Watch, discusses the importance of advocating for LGBT rights at a human rights conference in the 2010s. Interviewed by Jim Whitman, Dittrich illuminates the challenges and progress in securing rights for the LGBT community around the globe.

Dittrich highlights the significance of the Yogyakarta Principles, a set of international standards developed in 2006 that translate existing human rights to specifically address sexual orientation and gender identity. These principles serve as a tool for engaging with government officials, urging them to improve laws and policies in line with the rights outlined in international treaties such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Emphasizing practical applications, Dittrich recounts experiences from meeting LGBT organisations in Cameroon, where the full implementation of the principles is necessary, to illustrating the specific amendments required in Dutch law concerning transgender rights. The focus then shifts to the landmark case of same-sex adoption by a couple, where Dittrich recounts personal legislative initiatives that led to broadening adoption rights in the Netherlands while acknowledging the persistent discriminatory practices abroad.

The conversation shifts to India's legal landscape, where Dittrich details the ongoing battle to decriminalize homosexual conduct, foregrounding the potential wider legal reverberations of a positive ruling from the Supreme Court. This legal struggle is placed within a global context, highlighting similar initiatives in places like Nepal, where progress towards legalizing same-sex marriages is ongoing thanks to the advocacy work of individuals like openly gay member of parliament Sunil Pant.

Dittrich further underscores the complexities faced by transgender individuals, emphasizing that broader societal understanding and legal adjustments are needed to respect and protect their rights. The dialogue also touches on the fluctuating political will around sex work, with Dittrich advocating for protective policies that serve the workers' best interests.

In summary, Dittrich reflects on the multiplicity within the LGBT community and the importance of respecting cultural sensitivities while maintaining a human rights focus. The podcast culminates with the presentation of a joint statement at the Human Rights Council in Geneva, a significant step towards a UN resolution on sexual orientation and gender identity, bolstered by the support of 78 governments.

This summary is created using Generative AI. Although it is based on the recording's transcription, it may contain errors or omissions. Click here to learn more about how this summary was created.

Record date:16th March 2011
Interviewer:Jim Whitman
Location:Wellington Town Hall, Wellington
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Archive:The master recording is archived at the Alexander Turnbull Library (OHDL-004145).