Yogyakarta Principles

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Yogyakarta Principles, formally The Yogyakarta Principles on the Application of International Human Rights Law in Relation to Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity is an advocacy document relating to international human rights law on the dignity and asserted rights of LGBT people. It was adopted after an international meeting held by the International Commission of Jurists in Yogyakarta, Indonesia from 6 to 9 November 2006. Mary Robinson, a former United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, is one of 29 people who signed the Principles. The Council of Europe esteems these Principles in a document, "Human Rights and Gender Identity".[1] These Principles have also been translated into the official languages of the United Nations: Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish.[2] They have also been translated into other languages.[3][4]

The Principles also reports that there are refugees from persecution and even honour killings because of sexual orientation or gender identity.[5]

To realize the human rights on sexual orientation and gender identity according to the Vienna Declaration and those Principles, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has made up a document for the 19th sessions of United Nations Human Rights Council.[6] The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime also use those Principles for the human treatment of prisoners.[7]

Main contents[change | change source]

The Yogyakarta Principles consist of a Preamble, 29 Principles, and additional recommendations to the United Nations and the international community based on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Vienna Declaration, and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. According to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women they also exist to abolish the stereotyped role on gender. The Yogyakarta Principles affirm international legal standards with which they demand States must comply.[8]

The Preamble tells of human rights violations because of sexual orientation and gender identity and explains what sexual orientation and gender identity are. The Principles affirm human rights, such as civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, and demand the prohibition of all discrimination relating to those human rights. Principle 3 demands legal recognition of the sex change of transsexuals without any surgery, including sterilization and sexual reassignment surgery, because the each person's self-defined gender identity is seen as important for the autonomy and dignity of the person.[9] But at the same time, the importance of the rights to undergo body modification on sexual reassignment surgery as a "non-discriminatory treatment" and other health cares without discrimination is emphasized,[10] and must be provided even in prison.[11] The Principles affirm protection by states against all human trafficking,[12] homelessness[13] and violence, hate crimes, harassment and bullying. They insist that it is important for society to respect the dignity and self-esteem of LGBT people against prejudice and to protect their right to education.[14] The Principles also insist on the prevention of any medical abuse, including the case of the intersex children, and assert that any gender identity is not a disease.[15] They also aim to promote human rights of any kind and say that States must protect LGBT activists from any violence, threat or discrimination against them.[16] Principle 29 affirms that violations of human rights including on sexual orientation and gender identity must be punished.

Criticism[change | change source]

Many radical feminists think the Principles are misguided and a threat to women's rights.[17] Feminist scholar Sheila Jeffreys says "The Yogyakarta Principles do not have any force in law...They arise from a campaign by crossdressing men to protect and promote their masochistic sexual obsession."[18]

Related pages[change | change source]

Notes[change | change source]

  1. Human Rights and Gender Identity
  2. "The Yogyakarta Principles: The Application of International Human Rights Law in relation to Sexual Orientation and Gender". Yogyakarta Principles. Retrieved 15 March 2016.
  3. The full text of the Yogyakarta Principles in Greek
  4. Yogyakarta Principles in Action, Unofficial Translations
  5. UNHCR Guidance Note on refugees claim relating to sexual orientation and gender identity
  6. Discriminatory laws and practices and acts of violence against individuals based on their sexual orientation and gender identity, A/HRC/19/41
  7. Handbook on prisoners with special needs, p. 110
  8. Introduction to the Yogyakarta Principles
  9. Principle 3. Right to recognition before the law
  10. Principle 17. Right to the Highest Attainable Standard of Health
  11. Principle 9. Right to Treatment with Humanity while in Detention
  12. Principle 11. Right to Protection from all forms of exploitation, sale and trafficking of human being
  13. Principle 15. Right to Adequate Housing
  14. Principle 16. Right to Education
  15. Principle 18. Protection from Medical Abuses
  16. Principle 27. Right to Promote Human Rights
  17. Objectnow.org,"Yogyakarta Principles:International Threat to Women's Rights"[permanent dead link]
  18. "DrRadfem.org "Enforcing men's sexual rights in international human rights law" (transcript of speech by Jeffreys)". Archived from the original on 2020-08-05. Retrieved 2020-03-14.

Other websites[change | change source]