On the eve of the International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia UNAIDS called governments to immediately stop arbitrary and discriminatory arrests of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people based on their sexual orientation or gender identity and to enact laws to protect their human rights.
According to the global estimations, transgender women are 12 times more likely to acquire HIV than all adults of reproductive age. It is estimated that 0.1–1.1% of the global population is transgender and that 16.5% of transgender women are living with HIV. The COVID-19 pandemic made things dramatically worse. “The COVID-19 crisis has exposed and exacerbated the inequality, violence and abuse that LGBTI people face every day. We need to break the silence against these draconian laws, which only serve to further marginalize people”, said Winnie Byanyima, UNAIDS Executive Director.
As of December 2019, more than 70 countries criminalize same-sex sexual behaviour. Under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, governments have a moral and legal obligation to remove those laws and to enact laws that protect people from discrimination.