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With Pride Month Underway, Rep. Titus, Sen. Markey Reintroduce Bill to Promote LGBTQ+ Rights Through U.S. Diplomacy

Washington, DC – As communities worldwide celebrate Pride this month, Congresswoman Dina Titus (D-NV), a senior member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, and Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) reintroduced the Greater Leadership Overseas for the Benefit of Equality (GLOBE) Act to reinstate U.S. leadership in protecting and promoting the rights of LGBTQ+ individuals around the world.

The legislation would build a framework into U.S. diplomacy for protecting LGBTQ+ rights by creating a Special Envoy at the State Department for LGBTQ+ issues, authorizing sanctions against individuals who violate the human rights of LGBTQ+ people abroad, and codifying programs at the State Department and USAID to compel action protecting and advancing these rights.

“I’m reintroducing this legislation because LGBTQ+ people around the world continue to face discrimination, bigotry, and violence, with Uganda’s tragic Anti-Homosexuality Act a recent and stark reminder,” said Rep. Titus. “Watchdog organizations, advocacy groups, and international investigative bodies continually document hostility toward LGBTQ+ people in every part of the world. We must take this opportunity to lead by example and encourage other countries to do the same.”

“As LGBTQI+ people face rising discrimination here at home, we must use Pride Month as an opportunity to afrm our commitment to freedom and equality – regardless of gender or sexual orientation – for every person, from Utah to Uganda,” said Sen. Markey. “Across the globe, LGBTQI+ people continue to be persecuted, jailed and murdered for simply expressing who they are or who they love. LGBTQI+ rights are human rights, and the GLOBE Act will empower the United States to protect the fundamental rights of freedom, equality, and justice for all people.”

“The GLOBE Act authorizes new diplomatic tools to help the State Department and other U.S. foreign affairs agencies respond with greater speed, clarity, and intentionality to human rights abuses targeting LGBTQI+ individuals around the world. The current scramble to respond effectively to the unparalleled assault on the rights of LGBTQI+ individuals in Uganda today shows why the GLOBE Act is so important. It would allow us to deploy a stronger and more coordinated set of diplomatic, economic, security sector, and public diplomacy tools in our response to Uganda’s draconian new anti-homosexuality law – and to other human rights emergencies that strike LGBTQI+ communities with increasing frequency,” said Mark Bromley, Co-Chair of the Council for Global Equality.

“The GLOBE Act provides a framework to protect and promote the rights of LGBTQ+ people worldwide, especially as members of our community are living in fear for their lives now more than ever," said David Stacy, Vice President of Government Affairs at the Human Rights Campaign. “As we see an onslaught of anti-LGBTQ+ legislation and uptick in violence against the LGBTQ+ community worldwide, the United States must make it clear that it stands with LGBTQ+ people. This is why we are grateful for Senators Markey, Merkley, and Shaheen and Representative Titus for acknowledging what’s at stake and seeking to make LGBTQ+ rights a core tenet of our foreign policy. Today’s legislation sends a clear message that the fight for equality doesn’t end at our borders, and that we must leverage all of our foreign policy tools to aggressively tackle all threats to LGBTQ+ dignity at home and abroad.”

This legislation has been endorsed by the following organizations: American Jewish World Service, Amnesty International USA, Anti-Defamation League, Center for Biological Diversity, Congressional Equality Caucus, Council for Global Equality, Equality California, Equimundo, Foreign Policy for America, Gender Action, Health GAP (Global Access Project), Heartland Alliance International, Human Rights Campaign, Ipas, MADRE, MPact Global Action, National Center for Transgender Equality, ORAM - Organization for Refuge, Asylum and Migration, Outright International, Oxfam America, Pathfinder International, Rainbow Railroad, Silver State Equality, The Global Justice Institute, The International Institute on Race, Equality, and Human Rights, The Trevor Project, Women’s Refugee Commission, and the Equality Caucus and Pro-Choice Caucus in the House.