The United Nations’ human rights office on Friday launched its first-ever gay outreach campaign, Free & Equal, to pressure nations around the world to enact laws that benefit gays and the transgendered.
The Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights described the campaign as multi-faceted. It will include video and other public service messages, a social media presence, fact sheets, a web site and speaking engagements headed by celebrities from around the world, The Associated Press reported.
“Changing attitudes is never easy,” said Navi Pillay, the high commissioner for human rights, in the AP report. “It begins with often difficult conversations. And that is what we want to do with this campaign. Free & Equal will inspire millions of conversations among people around the world and across the ideological spectrum.”
The campaign launched in Cape Town, South Africa — Pillay’s country of origin, but also the site of some of the world’s most noted cases of transgender and gay discrimination. Just this week in Cameroon, for example, two men were arrested and jailed for having sex with each other, AP reported.