Nobody should have to flee their home because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
However, in some countries, many Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender or Intersex (LGBTI) people face discrimination, persecution and violence on a daily basis, and often have no choice but to seek asylum elsewhere. Others are paralysed by fear and suffer in silence, further compounding their vulnerability.
Being an LGBTI refugee can add to the complex challenges and threats that a refugee faces after fleeing conflict. They need to find physical safety from war and conflict, whilst also being protected from threats and discrimination that can result from their LGBTI identity.
At UNHCR, we work to protect LGBTI refugees and asylum-seekers Everywhere.
In recent decades, the number of LGBTI refugees and asylum-seekers has risen, with most qualifying as ‘members of a particular social group’ under the 1951 Refugee Convention. Today, 77 countries in the world criminalise same-sex relations and seven countries punish it with the death penalty.
How UNHCR helps the LGBTI refugee community?
UNHCR is a global leader in protecting vulnerable people fleeing violence, conflict and prejudice. UNHCR sensitively identifies LGBTI refugees and displaced people for immediate protection or resettlement and fosters supportive communities to protect LGBTI people who are at-risk.