The Importance of IDAHO

Publish Date: 17/05/2013

What is IDAHO?

International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHO) is marked every year around the world since 2005 and calls for respect for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGB&T) people worldwide. It marks the date that homosexuality was removed from the International Classification of Diseases of the World Health Organisation on May 17th 1992.

Why it is important?

Today, there are still 78 countries in which same-sex relationships are illegal. Although the world has made progress in relative terms, the actual number of people concerned by these laws is almost the same as in 1950, and today there are still 1.5 billion people who live under direct risk of criminal sanctions for same-sex relations. 

Who is taking part?

-       17 African nations. In 14 of these countries homosexuality is legally punishable, with maximum prison sentences ranging from 3 months to 14 years.

-       Several Middle-Eastern countries, including Egypt, Lebanon, Israel and Palestine.

-       17 of 21 countries in South and Central America.

-       Several countries where there are more than 50 events planned around the day, including the UK, the US and Brazil.

What are The LGF Doing?

We're once again asking people to fly the rainbow flag in support. We've teamed up with Gaydio and send out hundreds of free rainbow flags to organisations around the country for station listeners to fly on 17th May. 

We're also calling for people to be as innovative as possible and are giving away a special prize, provided by The Cooperative RESPECT Network, to whoever comes up with the most creative interpretation of the rainbow flag. Last year supporters sent in rainbow representations which included cupcakes, tattoos and face painting.

We're also asking you to send in their rainbow images; rainbow@lgf.org.uk; via twitter @lgfoundation #IDAHO.

This year major financial services provider Barclays will be supporting our initiative in a number of ways including a message on ATM machines across the country from 15 – 17th May as well as a poster in all 1,700 branches across the UK from 10 – 17th May. 

Events in Manchester

We're also is hosting a number of events in Manchester including a vigil marking IDAHO, to be held in Sackville Gardens, on Friday 17th May; 7 - 8.30pm. There will be speakers and an opportunity to pay tribute and respect all those who have suffered intolerance and prejudice because of sexual orientation or gender identity. Attendees are encouraged to turn up on the day or can email rainbow@lgf.org.uk for more information.

On Saturday 18th May a community ‘Flash-mob’ event will be held in central Manchester. The LGF want people to unite against hate, intolerance, inequality and injustice in society by creating an atmosphere in which couples can show their love and affection for one another in a positive and powerful way.  The kissing flashmob will raise awareness of same sex affection.  Join in the conversation on Twitter @lgfoundation #kissh8 or email enough@lgf.org.uk for more information.

For more information about how to get involved in any of The LGF's IDAHO activities visit www.lgf.org.uk/flag or email rainbow@lgf.org.uk #IDAHO.