Lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and queer (LGBTQ) asylum seekers and refugees face systemic violence and discrimination around the world. Many of them seek protection abroad, yet they are too often faced with new and continued forms of discrimination while in transit and within their host countries, or countries of asylum.

The International Detention Coalition, in partnership with the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association (ILGA), the Association for the Prevention of Torture (APT), and the Queer Detainee Empowerment Project (QDEP), was very pleased to participate in a panel on 14 June, during the 32nd session of the Human Rights Council, on the issue of violence against LGBTQ asylum seekers and refugees in detention. Panelists highlighted the specific risks faced by LGBTQ people throughout their immigration journey, including targeted violence, solitary confinement, prolonged period of detention and poor medical care. They called for an end to detention of LGBTQ persons on the basis of their specific vulnerability, the enactment of procedures to disclose their sexual orientation and gender identity in a safe, voluntary and dignified manner, as well as the establishment of alternatives to detention.

The need to have independent oversight of immigration detention facilities was also stressed, along with proper training of monitors to ensure they are equipped to detect and address specific abuse against LGBTQ persons. Finally, all policies on the matter should be developed together with grass-root LGBTQ organisations.