I would like to thank the co-chairs, Argentina and the United Kingdom, for hosting this conference and welcome this opportunity to highlight Iceland’s support for the Equal Rights Coalition.
Let me first say that we are a proud member of this Coalition and fully committed to its vision, mission, and values.
The Icelandic government places a strong emphasis on the rights of LGBTI+ people and works diligently to make improvements within this policy area in Iceland, as evidenced by the recent changes to the law on gender autonomy and the law on equal treatment in the labour market.
Moreover, ensuring fundamental human rights is an integral part of Iceland’s foreign policy and strategy for international development cooperation – and the advancement of equal rights for LGBTI+ people is critical to achieving progress in this regard.
This was a key priority for Iceland during our term in the Human Rights Council and continues to be considered in all our work on human rights.
Around the world LGBTI+ people are subject to discrimination and violence for simply being who they are. Criminalization, social stigma and discriminatory laws and policies represent some of the severe barriers to the inclusion and meaningful participation of LGBTI+ people in many societies today.
These barriers also affect the realisation of the Sustainable Development Goals, as the achievement of the 2030 Agenda is intimately linked with the recognition of human rights.
Ladies and gentlemen,
The Equal Rights Coalition has an important role to play in bringing together governments and civil society to demonstrate our collective action in promoting inclusion and diversity, sharing experiences, and combatting inequalities and discrimination.
This five-year strategy and implementation plan is an important step in achieving and monitoring concrete progress. Iceland commits to contribute to the elimination of violence and discrimination against LGBTI+ people and to share our experiences when it comes to laws and policies on gender recognition and outlawing harmful practices.
We are dedicated to the work ahead with the Equal Rights Coalition in promoting increased social acceptance in our societies. Together we must work closely in partnership with stakeholders to take coordinated action to advance the fundamental human rights of LGBTI+ people.
Ávarpið var flutt á ráðherrafundi Equal Rights Coalition, 6. júlí 2021