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Youth Meet to Prioritize the Post-2015 Agenda

JK-Blog-635x508The blog is the third in the series written by participants of the Post-2015 Youth Global Strategy Meeting. The meeting convened by the YCSRR brought together young advocates working on the Post-2015 process from across regions and movements and was held from June 27-29 in Hong Kong. Click here to read more blogs.

The Youth Coalition for Sexual and Reproductive Rights (YCSRR) brought together 21 youths from different movements and regions around the world to a 3 day strategy meeting towards the Post 2015 development agenda in Hong Kong from the 27th to he 29th of June . They also had a one day training for LGBTIQ activists as a way to ensure sexual orientation and gender identities and expression (SOGIE) are a key component of the Post 2015 development agenda.

This one day SOGIE training was indeed a great reflection that they were serious about getting LGBTIQ issues as a priority. This was like music to my ears because I firmly believe that LGBTIQ had to be explicitly mentioned. For too long LGBTIQ has been a part of either the “vulnerable communities” or “gender equality” in high level meetings. However in country it may have different interpretations hence creating a loophole for governments to disregard LGBTIQ issues and lived realities.

Meeting these 20 other youth activists was indeed a great pleasure. They were clearly all forward thinking individuals who believe in equality of all people, therefore discussions like gay rights, abortion and transgender health was a breeze. By far in all the meetings I have attended this group was the only one in which no one opposed to or cringed at the mention of the word abortion a memory that will remain for life.

With no doubt this group was indeed the best head hunted ones to work together towards building a future that we all envision as feminists and activists all around the world.

Although there was no transgender person at the meeting we tried our very best to address their unique healthcare needs as well.The thematic priorities of the youth strategic meeting were:

  • Education
  • Health & SRHR
  • Employment
  • Gender equality, SOGIE and women’s rights
  • Peace and security
  • Governance and Political Participation

The post 2015 development agenda needs to ensure that LGBTIQ communities are part of all discussions that lead to the final recommendations, nothing about us without us. If the post 2015 development agenda is truly striving for free, equal and just societies, it needs to have very specific and clear recommendations related to LGBTIQ communities. A necessary first step towards this is zero tolerance on any form of discrimination based on SOGIE. Nothing about us without us to achieve a future we want. A future we envision to be where we all live a healthy and happy life, life without poverty and an environment that is self-sustainable.

*Jasmine Kaur (or Jasbant Kaur) is a human rights and LGBTIQ activist who works with various civil society organisations to bring about positive changes.  Jasmine lives in Suva, Fiji Islands, and is the Founder of Oceania Pride. The organization aspires to advocate for and implement policy and legislative changes on equal right for LGBTIQ communities. 

†Originally published in the July 2014 issue of the Pride Journal

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