EU / International

LGBT rights are one of the remaining human rights challenges of our time. There are still many countries where being gay is a crime; where LGBT people are imprisoned, assaulted or denied access to essential services. Ireland plays a strong role internationally in advocating for LGBT rights. GLEN works with international colleagues and organisations, international bodies and the Irish Government to advance LGBT rights internationally. We also work at EU level to ensure that LGBT issues are fully recognised and integrated in EU-wide initiatives and directives that impact on the lives of LGBT people in Ireland and throughout the EU.

GLEN works with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to raise and progress human rights issues for LGBTI people. GLEN is a member of the Departments' NGO/DFAT standing committee which meets regularly to discuss human rights issues.

Ireland also has a strong track record in supporting LGBT rights internationally, including the co-sponsoring of the first ever UN resolution which recognised the human rights of LGBT people worldwide, which was passed earlier in 2011. Ireland has been recently elected to the UN Human Rights Council. Building on the very valuable work done to date, the new seat on the UN Human Rights Council provides a critically important opportunity for Ireland to continue to lead the development of protections across the world for LGBTI people.


Work with International LGBT Bodies


GLEN is a member of ILGA-Europe, which works for equality and human rights for LGBTI people at the European level - including at the EU, the European Parliament and at the Council of Europe. GLEN Director Brian Sheehan is a board member of ILGA-Europe.

GLEN supports the work of ILGA-Europe to advance Directives of importance for LGBTI people in Ireland and across the EU, including for example the Asylum Directive and the Victims Rights Directives agreed by the EU in 2012 and which fully incorporate sexual orientation and gender identity. GLEN will work with the Irish Government to ensure that these Directives are transposed with the greatest possible impact for LGBT people.

ILGA-Europe have an annual conference which brings together LGBTI activists from Council of Europe countries to explore the critical equality and human rights issues for LGBTI people. The 2012 Conference was held in Dublin, organised by GLEN and a wide group of Irish LGBT organisations. See the Conference website for further details.

Amsterdam Network

This is a network of European and US national LGBT NGOs who work with their Governments' Departments of Foreign Affairs and Aid on international LGBTI human rights issues. GLEN is a member of this network, which meets annually, meeting in Dublin in October 2012.


Work with International Bodies

There is a wide range of UN and other international bodies or agencies which offer opportunities to engage on LGBTI rights, both for Ireland and internationally. GLEN made submissions to the United Nations Universal Periodic Review process on Ireland, and has made submissions to reviews of the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights.

Front Line Defenders

Front Line Defenders is an international foundation, based in Dublin, that works to protect human rights defenders across the world, including LGBTI human rights defenders. GLEN collaborates with Front Line, including hosting a seminar to concide with their Dublin Platform linking Irish LGBTI people and international LGBTI activists.