Since 2004, the 17th of May has been recognised as the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia (IDAHOBIT)*. It was created to highlight the violence and discrimination experienced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex people, and those with other diverse sexual orientations and gender identities, worldwide.
Through events associated with IDAHOBIT, we can raise the awareness of the public, the media, opinion-makers, businesses, and governments to the often harrowing situations endured by members of the LGBTQIA+ community every day.
More than 130 countries around the world choose to mark this day, some of whom still view same-sex relationships as illegal. In addition, the date chosen is also significant. The 17 May 1990 was the date that the World Health Organisation decided to declassify homosexuality as a mental disorder.
This year the theme for IDAHOBIT is “Our Bodies. Our Lives. Our Rights”. An empowering statement for all members of the LGBTQIA+ community: to be able to express our gender(s) free from violence, whilst demanding that individuals are not subject to conversion therapies, or forced sterilisation. Everyone has the right to live freely and with dignity.
For more information please visit the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia & Biphobia website.
*Since 2004 individuals have amended the name of the day so that it is more inclusive. However, for the purpose of this article I have referred to the day by its original name.