Foreign Policy and Gay Rights in Africa

Because our own project work takes us frequently to the African continent, we continue to follow and stay engaged with “the complex geography of the global fight for gay rights.” 

This article in Foreign Policy illustrates just some of the challenges for Westerners running up against the issue, even when working on projects seemingly unrelated to discrimination against the gay population. Especially well-reasoned, is this passage from the piece, which mirrors our own policy of involving local leaders at every step in the process to create effective community driven social change.   

[quote]On tactical questions like whether aid conditionality is effective, Western activists and governments should pay close attention to the views of local groups. In 2011, a large group of African social justice organizations issued a statement opposing a proposal to condition British aid, arguing, among other things, that doing so risked alienating local LGBT activists from other civil society groups. Although this doesn’t mean that every proposed set of LGBT-related conditions is unwelcome, it does underscore that opinions on the utility of aid conditionality are divided and that local views need to be carefully canvassed and considered.[/quote]

Please see our overview page for more on our ongoing project work in Uganda. 

anti-gay

Photo Credit: ISAAC KASAMANI/AFP/Getty Images

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