Protecting LGBTI human rights defenders

Read how ILGA-Europe is working to secure and support LGBTI human rights defenders if they have come under attack because of their work for human rights for LGBTI people.

In December 2012 ILGA-Europe joined a global programme called Dignity for All: LGBTI Assistance Program. The programme provides emergency funds, advocacy support, and security assistance to human rights defenders and civil society organisations under threat or attack due to their work for human rights and equality for LGBTI people.

Dignity for All also supports targeted, time-bound advocacy campaigns to respond to threats or attacks on human rights for LGBTI people and human rights work, as well as assistance for individual victims or communities connected to funded advocacy campaigns. Security training is available to proactively assist organisations to continue their work more safely.

ILGA-Europe is working in a consortium with 5 other international human rights organisations, including:



  • Who is eligible? Human rights defenders or civil society organisations are eligible for support if they have come under attack because of their work for human rights for LGBTI people. A human rights defender (HRD) is an individual who peacefully works to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms. A civil society organisation (CSO) is defined as an established group of two or more activists working together on human rights. A CSO does not need to be officially registered to be considered for support by Dignity for All, but must be able to document at least six months of activism.
  • What is the source of funding? Dignity for All receives contributions through an international donor pool of several governments and independent foundations that support human rights for LGBTI people.


  • What constitutes an emergency? An emergency is an urgent need for assistance arising from threats to HRDs or CSOs for their work. Factors to be considered include: when the emergency arose and whether the HRD or CSO faces prosecution or other legal proceedings, security risks, loss of property or equipment, or injury or imprisonment.
  • What types of emergency support are provided? Dignity for All will provide HRDs and CSOs with small, short-term emergency grants for medical expenses, legal representation, prison visits, trial monitoring, temporary relocation, dependent support, security, equipment replacement and other types of urgent expenses. By definition, emergency assistance is finite and given to address a time-sensitive threat. An emergency may also encompass the need for more than one type of assistance (i.e. medical and legal, or prison visits and equipment replacement).
  • How can you submit an application for emergency support? Applications can be submitted by a CSO or HRD directly or referred on behalf of an HRD or CSO. Please provide as much detailed information as possible on why emergency aid is needed. To inquire about submitting an application, please contact
  • How do we process emergency requests? We review all applications to determine whether they meet the eligibility criteria (described above) and whether the requested funds are justified. The review process independently verifies the information provided by the applicant.


  • What types of advocacy support are provided? Dignity will provide support to CSOs for small, short-term advocacy initiatives to counteract urgent threats such as proposed or recently passed legislation, sudden government crackdowns, increased levels of violence or other emergent dangers/trends or to take advantage of time-bound advocacy opportunities.
  • How do you request advocacy support? Contact a member organisation of the Dignity Consortium with a proposal for an urgent, short-term advocacy activity designed to have a significant LGBTI human rights impact. Applications should provide specific information on the issue the planned activity will address its location and timeframe, and a detailed budget. Dignity for All cannot provide long-term programmatic support.


  • What type of security training is provided? The Dignity Consortium provides preventive security workshops and training to help LGBTI CSOs, communities and HRDs develop security plans. This proactive support is meant to enhance the security of LGBT activists and organisations and to help prevent future threats and attacks from disrupting LGBTI human rights work.
  • How do you request security support? Contact a member organisation of the Dignity Consortium with a request for security assistance, a description of the type of security training needed, and any current threats. Training may be conducted on-site or provided remotely via phone, Skype, or other means.


More information about Dignity for All - write to Björn van Roozendaal, Programmes Director

Training on security issues in Istanbul

At the end of August 2014, ILGA-Europe organised training on security issues in Istanbul for 12 LGBTI activists from human rights NGOs from Eastern European countries. The training was organised within the program “Dignity for All” on protecting LGBTI human rights defenders with support of the Heartland Alliance.

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