Some background info on the vote of 24 March 2015 + List of recorded vote + Thank you letter to the SG on the outcome of the vote
The victory last week in the Fifth Committee of the General Assembly truly was incredibly significant, if not historic within the UN system.
Although the strategy was to turn this into a vote on the authority of the Secretary-General to issue administrative instructions, and not on gay marriages, there was no denying that there was an LGBTI angle to this vote.
Colleagues of ours who have followed the Fifth Committee for years don’t recall seeing a room that full on the day of the vote for an issue not involving the budget for the biennium.
And the presence that day of actual Ambassadors such as Samantha Power, of the United States, reinforced how important this vote was.
From December till March, I had been hearing quite often how this particular issue was now being decided back in country’s capitals, as opposed to in the corridors of the UN.
The vote was taken very seriously.
Unfortunately, there is a strong possibility that similar votes may surface again in the future, as Russia, and other countries, were not happy with the vote on 24 March.
We would have to remain vigilant.
Regardless of what other votes may come in the future, it is important that we continue to fight for full equality and inclusiveness for LGBTI staff.
As I have mentioned in the past, these are our priorities for the year:
- Inclusive adoption and surrogacy policies.
- Equality in pension rights
- Inclusive mobility policies
- Inclusive policies for transgender and intersex staff;
- and Inclusive policies for staff with HIV/AIDS.
Please bear with us as our positions on these issues take shape.
These are complex issues, and we want to make sure that the proposals we offer to UN administrations are not only forward-thinking, but also knowledgeable, detailed, and thoughtful.
I will keep you posted in the months ahead.
Hyung Hak Nam (Alfonso)
PS – Two attachments:
1. The results of the vote – There’s a minefield of interesting information, and quite a number of surprises when it comes to the votes of some countries.
2. The thank you letter to the SG on the outcome of the vote.