Today, 17 May, the world observes International Day against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia (IDAHOT). Indeed, every year since its inception in 2004, IDAHOT Day has been celebrated in over 130 countries, with many public events, large and small. This year, however, the streets will be emptier, public venues will not host events. The new reality of the global Covid-19 pandemic has put physical restrictions to our accustomed lives. However, even as societies must adjust to a new way of living, the past challenges have not disappeared and in fact, they may have been magnified.
This is a difficult period for all of us, but people with diverse sexual orientations, gender identities, expressions, or sex characteristics, become more invisible and more under threat during this global pandemic, hence, this year’s theme “Breaking the silence”.
The truth is that the coronavirus crisis has had a significant impact on the health and wellbeing of the LGBTI community along with other vulnerable groups. LGBTI persons may require protection against domestic violence and homo- or transphobic abuse by a parent or another member of their household under lockdown and measures to stay at home. Apart from the negative impact on public health, we are also experiencing a tremendous impact on the world economy, growing homelessness and unemployment – issues that plague the LGBTI community.
Therefore, on this day, the European Union Delegation to the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago together with the Embassies of Germany, France, the Netherlands and Spain, wish to express their solidarity with the LGBTI community of Trinidad and Tobago. We raise the rainbow flag as a sign of that solidarity, and we pledge today to continue actively supporting the LGBTI community of Trinidad and Tobago to achieve and enjoy full and equal human rights.