Current Affairs

Northern Ireland gay rights group welcome bill of rights

PinkNews Staff Writer March 31, 2008
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The Coalition on Sexual Orientation (CoSO) has welcomed the handover of the final Recommendations of the Bill of Rights Forum to the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission.

The group said that the Yogyakarta Principles were used to inform the drafing of the bill.

The principles were adopted by a meeting of experts in international law in Yogyakarta, Indonesia in 2006.

They set out a legal standard for how governments and other agencies should end violence, abuse and discrimination against sexual minorities.

Mairead McCafferty and James Knox, Co-Chairs of CoSO, told

“We believe this is a significant step forward in the protection of LGBT people’s rights in Northern Ireland and ultimately has the potential to have a profound effect on the rights of LGBT people here and further afield, although we are still at the beginning of the process.

“As such Northern Ireland should be proud of acknowledging the need to protect, promote and fulfil the rights not only of LGBT people but potentially all our marginalised and disadvantaged communities.”

To raise awareness of the development of the Bill of Rights in Northern Ireland, CoSO hosted a series of successful events across Northern Ireland to engage local LGBT communities and individuals in the process of drafting recommendations for a Bill of Rights for Northern Ireland.

The work of the Forum is now complete and the Report Recommendations will go forward to the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission as part of their statutory duty to progress a Bill of Rights for Northern Ireland.

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