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“Like being a woman, like being a racial, religious, tribal, or ethnic minority, being LGBT does not make you less human. And that is why gay rights are human rights, and human rights are gay rights.” -
Hillary Clinton at Human Rights Day (2011).
While Ghana enjoys relatively good human rights practices within the African continent, its performance falls alarmingly short when it comes to rights entitled to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) persons. A hot-button topic characterized by extreme stigmatization, the general discourse of homosexuality in Ghana is colored with harmful beliefs, attitudes, and prejudices that attempt to legitimize the human rights abuses of LGBT people.
Today, LGBT persons in Ghana are frequent targets of threats ranging from media criticism, to discrimination, to degrading treatment and violence—the 2012 attacks perpetrated against gays and lesbians in Jamestown, Accra, represent one example. This handbook brings to light such matters, and tackles the sensitive topic of homosexuality and LGBT rights from various perspectives—both legal and social, domestic and international, cultural and religious, etc.—with the hopes of reducing the stigmatization and discrimination of LGBT persons in Ghana.
The first section, LGBT Information, provides an overview of LGBT discourse to provide the framework that guides this handbook. In LGBT Worldwide, we examine the movement, politics and pertinent LGBT-related problems around the world, including an overview of regional laws and policies. The section Human Rights explores the nexus of LGBT and human rights, and presents the domestic, international and case laws that protect the rights of LGBT persons.
By presenting LGBT rights within the greater context of human rights, this handbook represents our effort and commitment at the Human Rights Advocacy
Centre (HRAC) to uphold the inalienable rights afforded by everyone without regard to sexual orientation or gender identity. We hope it provides LGBT persons and advocates with the tools, language and knowledge to help LGBT persons be empowered and enforce the rights entitled to them under the international laws of human rights.
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