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Are education systems LGBTI-inclusive? UNESCO teams up with youth organization to find out

22 June 2018

A global consultation on the LGBTI vision for how to make the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda for education and health more inclusive, is being jointly launched by UNESCO and youth organization MAG Jeunes LGBT.

The inputs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex (LGBTI) youth will be collected through a web-based consultation conducted by MAG Jeanes LGBT and supported by a UNESCO-led social media campaign.

The results of the consultation will be presented at the 2nd biannual Equal Rights Coalition (ERC) conference in August 2018 in Vancouver, Canada. The ERC is an intergovernmental coalition of 39 countries that advances the human rights of LGBTI people and promotes inclusive development in both member and non-member countries.

In advance of the social media campaign, UNESCO Permanent Delegations of Canada and Chile, also co-chairs of ERC, are hosting a briefing meeting on 22 June 2018 at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, sharing information about the ERC conference and UNESCO’s contribution to it, as well as the associated international consultation.

“We know that a significant proportion of LGBT students experience homophobic and transphobic violence in school, a far higher prevalence than their non-LGBT peers. They are more likely to feel unsafe in school, miss classes, or even drop out; which negatively impacts their education, employment prospects and well-being,” said Christophe Cornu, Senior Programme Specialist and Team Leader in the Section of Health and Education at UNESCO.

“Through this global consultation, we hope to learn more about these experiences, and in turn support Member States to provide safe and inclusive learning environments for all students. This is critical to effective learning, to meet human rights commitments, including the right to education and the other rights of the child, and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular SDG4.”

The web-based consultation hosted by MAG Jeanes LGBT will run until 11 July 2018, and the associated social media campaign from 25 to 29 June 2018.