LGBT community seeks an end to discrimination

Kathmandu, December 10

As the country celebrated International Human Right Day, dozens of gender minorities and activists, mostly those representing lesbian, transgender and bisexual women have demanded an end to discrimination against them and to ensure their human rights.

A number of gender minorities shared their stories at a programme today on how they were forced to drop schools and colleges, leave their homes, live under constant torture and how they were excluded, ignored and stigmatised by their families and the society. Many were left in tears as the gender minorities shared how they suffered for being third gender. The programme was organised by Mitini Nepal, an organisation that works to ensure rights of gender minorities in the country.

Monica Tamang, 20, one of the participants shared how she was bullied for her behaviour at school, was forced to leave her studies and how she was alienated from her family after revealing her gender identity to her parents.

“My mother’s attitude was completely different when I revealed my lesbian identity to her. She ignored me and questioned me how I could go against the rule of nature and the society.”

A research by Mitini Nepal showed that 51 per cent of lesbian, transgender and bisexual across the country, complained about discrimination they underwent in their lives. Of them, 41 per cent said they faced difficulties in daily life as people passed harsh comments and they had to live under constant fear that someone might hurt them in one way or the other.

Thirty-six per cent of them said they were not accepted at their homes.

Sixteen per cent said they were not allowed to participate in religious activities while nearly 19 per cent felt other forms of discrimination.

Despite majority of the gender minorities facing discrimination and violence, only 31 per cent said they reported about violence meted out to them to the police or the concerned authorities.

Eighty-seven per cent of them said they needed a separate dedicated agency to tackle their problems.

Of total 200 people from LGBT community representing seven provinces interviewed, 20 per cent said they shared their gender identity with their family members.