International Lesbian and Gay Association

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The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA) is an international organization bringing together more than 600 lesbian and gay, LGB, LGBT or LGBTIQ groups from around the world. It continues to be active in campaigning for LGBT rights on the international human rights and civil rights scene and regularly petitions the United Nations and governments. ILGA is represented in around 110 countries across the world.



According to its constitution[2] ILGA Has various administrative positions:

  • Secretary General (2 positions): currently held by Renato Sabbadini (Italy), Gloria Careaga (Mexico)
  • Women's Secretariat [3] : currently held by Gloria Careaga (Mexico)
  • Trans Secretariat [4]: currently held by Instituto Runa (Peru), alternate: Legabibo (Bostwana)
  • Executive Director: currently April Onwards

ILGA is divided into the following regions:

  • ILGA-Africa
  • ILGA-Asia
  • ILGA-ANZAPI (Australia, New Zealand, Aotearoa and Pacific Islands), formed c. 1978
  • ILGA-Europe
  • ILGA-North America
  • ILGA-LAC (Latin America and Caribbean)


The ILGA was founded on 8 August 1978 during the conference of the Campaign for Homosexual Equality in Coventry, England, at a meeting attended by 30 men representing 17 organisations from 14 countries. It was first called the International Gay Association (IGA) but changed its name to ILGA in 1986. ILGA was not the first Gay and Lesbian association. The first known gay rights organization was "The Society for Human Rights" in Chicago—circa 1924.[1]

The Coventry conference also called upon Amnesty International (AI) to take up the issue of persecution of lesbians and gays. After a campaign that lasted 13 years AI in 1991 made the human rights of lesbians and gays part of its mandate and today is a passionate advocate for LGBT rights on the international level.[2][dead link]

ILGA was also instrumental in getting the World Health Organisation to drop homosexuality from its list of illnesses.

ILGA was the first lesbian and gay rights organisation to gain "consultative status" as a non-governmental organisation at the United Nations. Statements were made in the name of ILGA in the 1993 and 1994 sessions of the United Nations Sub-Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities and in the 1994 session of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights. ILGA’s NGO status was suspended in September 1994.[citation needed]

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