Delegate: Mr Felix König (23 years)
8. Mr. König (Sweden), speaking as a youth delegate, said that he represented 76 Swedish youth organizations with over 500,000 members.
9. Inequality and discrimination were root causes of exclusion, unemployment and health problems that must be addressed by decision makers. The organization of which he was president, the National Youth Organization for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Youth, worked to address challenges related to sexual orientation and gender identity and to create space for everyone in society to be themselves and explore their identities and dreams. [*3*]
10. Gender norms, heterosexual norms and norms of physical ability affected everyone in society, both those who conformed to them and those who did not. Young people who did not conform to such norms faced additional discrimination. It was necessary to move beyond tolerance to a situation in which all people were equals and no one had to obtain permission to exist.
11. Young persons with lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender identities were bullied in school and experienced domestic violence and discrimination in the health-care system. Such circumstances could lead to depression, anxiety, homelessness or suicide attempts.
12. The work of his organization and others like it changed the lives of young people by holding events, such as summer camps, which gave them the opportunity to be open about their hopes, fears, dreams and past experiences. That enabled them to tackle discrimination, turn challenges into advantages and participate fully in society.
13. New technologies sped up interaction between young people around the world. Information about human rights violations spread quickly, enabling people to take a stand immediately, no matter where they lived. Many such violations passed without notice, forcing people into exclusion, poverty, unemployment, criminality and causing decreased life expectancy and reduced access to education.
14. Governments must acknowledge the Yogyakarta Principles, which stated that human rights were for everyone, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity. Hate crimes against transgender people sometimes supported by the State, were a serious issue.
15. Governments must challenge gender and sexuality stereotypes, and provide young people with access to comprehensive sexuality education, including information on sexual orientation and identity issues and contraceptive methods. They must also guarantee safe schools, free from discrimination and violence.
16. Governments must realize that youth civil society must be involved if the challenges facing the world were to be addressed. Any measures which did not involve youth risked irrelevance, inefficiency and illegitimacy.
UN Doc.: A/C.3/65/SR.2