Migration experiences of people with diverse SOGIESC

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer (LGBTIQ+) people face unique and specific risks at all stages of migration. Their experiences of migration are distinct from other migrants due to the multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination they may face, especially owing to their diverse sexual orientations, gender identities and expressions, and sex characteristics (SOGIESC). A large body of evidence shows that the criminalization of sexuality and gender identity in and of itself amounts to persecution, leading many LGBTIQ+ people to seek better conditions abroad.

Addressing discrimination and rights violations against migrants with diverse SOGIESC requires reforms on multiple fronts, including at a minimum:

  • decriminalization of non-normative sexualities and diverse gender expressions,
  • provision or expansion of appropriate services, and
  • advocacy efforts to increase tolerance and acceptance of LGBTIQ+ people worldwide.

Concerted action by governments, policymakers, and national and local humanitarian and development actors is therefore needed to protect and promote the rights of LGBTIQ+ people at all stages of migration and address the multiple and intersecting forms of discrimination they experience.

As part of a series of studies on the intersections of gender and migration, this paper aims to fill a considerable gap in literature on the experiences of LGBTIQ+ people globally at all stages of migration.

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