Development and Human Rights: Two Complementary Frameworks
In the past few years, issues related to sexual orientation and gender identity have gained serious attention and increasing support in the human rights arena. However, these issues have not received the same momentum in discussions about development. This article compares the human rights approach to the development approach and suggests how a development approach may be useful to those seeking improvements in the lives of LGBT people.
Development and human rights constitute, along with peace and security, the pillars of the United Nations system. As discussed in more detail below, the development and human rights frameworks have close ties to each other, both conceptually and operationally. However, despite recent efforts to harmonize these two approaches, the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights has called them “ships passing in the night.”Below we argue that both are important for understanding and addressing the needs of LGBT people, and we suggest ways of drawing on the strengths of both approaches.