Human Rights & Health Conference for Sydney WorldPride 2023

Human Rights & Health Conference for Sydney WorldPride 2023


G’day my name’s Casey Conway. I’m a First Nations Australian and community advocate here in Sydney. My name is Nicolas Parkhill, I’m the CEO of ACON, Australia’s largest health promotion organisation for sexuality and gender diverse people. Hi my name is Anna Brown. I’m a human rights lawyer and CEO of Equality Australia a national legal advocacy and campaigning organisation working to advance equality for LGBTI
people in Australia and beyond. We know that when you have good human rights you get great health outcomes. What we’re going to be doing with this conference is shining the link – the inextricable link between those two things and
placing our community’s voices at the centre of that conversation. And our vision for this conference is to create a place for people to come together people at the coalface of change, and share their stories of hope their experiences of positive change and their strategies for success. The three-day conference is going to tackle a number of human rights issues, but importantly health issues. We know we have disproportionate HIV rates particularly for gay men and trans people in the region. We know we have disproportionate
mental health issues globally. We have issues relating to ageing and domestic and family violence. What we’re going to be doing is unpacking those and examining those and how they look for our communities. Asia-Pacific is home to some of the most
unique and diverse expressions of gender and sexuality in the world, yet our
region has never been the focus of a WorldPride Human Rights Conference.
Our unique and rich cultures and histories deserve the world’s interest
and focus. Same-sex sexual activity is still criminalized by 30 percent of Asia
Pacific nations with penalties including whipping and imprisonment. These
communities are not only silenced and oppressed in their own countries but too
often are marginalised from our global LGBTIQ movement. We want to change
this. We’ll provide a platform for our First Nations rainbow communities and
shine a light on our experiences and honour our achievements. Australia has had some unique firsts. A
case taken to the UN about Tasmania’s homosexuality laws effectively led to
international law that protects gay people from discrimination. More recently
we’ve seen national laws introduced in Australia for the first time in the
world to protect intersex people from discrimination. We’ve also recently had
the world’s first apology for the criminalisation of homosexuality. I’ve
witnessed the positive ripple effects of these reforms across the globe. A step
forwards for one community is a step forward for LGBTQ+ people everywhere. This conference will provide a missing piece in our global dialogue to advance
our rights. Together we will be working to build the power, the voices, and
influence of our communities. Help create the change we need.

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