30 Jan 2020 - NPWJ News Digest on LGBTI Rights


Amnesty International: Pakatan still struggling with rights reforms
By Malay Mail, 30 Jan 2020

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 30 — The Pakatan Harapan (PH) government’s performance in delivering human rights reforms last year was mixed, according to Amnesty International. In its 2019 Review of Human Rights in Asia Pacific report launched yesterday, Amnesty said PH was still lagging in several areas such as the protection of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) community and indigenous people. Malaysia also still has not delivered on its promise to establish the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC) and repeal draconian security laws. “The government tolerated a degree of criticism, but continued to use laws restricting the right to freedom of expression, such as the Sedition Act and the Communications and Multimedia Act, especially against those making comments deemed sensitive, involving race, religion or royalty,” Amnesty said in the report. 

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Arizona Bill Would Ban Transgender Girls, Women From Sports Teams
By Huffpost, 28 Jan 2020

The proposal announced by GOP Rep. Nancy Barto on Friday is co-sponsored by 22 other Republican House members and is the latest on a growing list of more than a dozen states with bills that focus on transgender young people. The Arizona legislation allows only biological women or girls to play on female teams, and requires a doctor’s note to prove a person is female if their birth sex is disputed. It allows lawsuits by students who believe they’ve missed opportunities because a transgender person is on a school team.

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This Is How U.K. LGBTQ Rights Change After Brexit This Week
By Forbes, 26 Jan 2020

Ever since the U.K. public was asked if they wanted to stay or leave the European Union, many LGBTQ people have been worried about what leaving could mean to their rights. The worry is born from the simple case that many of the everyday rights LGBTQ people benefit from in the U.K. only became part of U.K. law because of EU law. There are plenty of notable examples where this isn't the case, of course—marriage laws across the U.K., most recently implemented in Northern Ireland this month years after the rest of the U.K., is one stand out example. But during the campaign for a People’s Vote a report, co-authored by Lawyer Jonathan Cooper and published by Gay Star News, detailed what leaving the EU might mean for LGBTQ rights.

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These photos highlight the human hurt over Poland's 'LGBT-free zones'
By Euronews, 23 Jan 2020

An activist has released pictures of gay people in front of Polish municipalities that declared themselves LGBT-free.  Bart Staszewski said he wanted to show the real people affected by the crackdown on gay rights in Poland. His tweet was picked up by liberal MEP Guy Verhofstadt, who called on Brussels to take immediate action against Polish authorities. Last year, 80 municipalities in Poland declared themselves free of LGBTI ideology, pledging to refrain from encouraging tolerance of gay people. It came as the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party launched a campaign against LGBT rights ahead of parliamentary elections in October.  "I want to show the monster that the politicians are fighting with and that we are not an abstract being, an ideology, but real flesh and blood people who must live in these places," Staszewski said in a statement.

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