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LGBT rights by country or territory

  (Redirected from Gay rights)

Worldwide laws regarding same-sex intercourse and freedom of expression and association
Same-sex intercourse legal
  
Marriage1
  
Marriage recognized but not performed1
  
Civil unions1
  
Unregistered cohabitation1
  
Same-sex unions not recognized
  
Laws restricting freedom of expression and association
Same-sex intercourse illegal
  
Unenforced penalty2
  
Imprisonment
  
Up to life imprisonment
  
Death penalty
Rings indicate areas where local judges have granted or denied marriages or imposed the death penalty in a jurisdiction where that is not otherwise the law or areas with a case-by-case application.
1Some jurisdictions in this category may currently have other types of partnerships.
2No arrests in the past three years or moratorium on law.
LGBT rights at the United Nations
  
Support States which supported the LGBT rights declaration in the General Assembly or on the Human Rights Council in 2008 or 2011
  
Oppose States which supported an opposing declaration in 2008 and continued their opposition in 2011
  
Neither States which did not support either declaration
  
Subsequent member South Sudan, which was not a member of the United Nations in 2008
  
Non-member states States that are not voting members of the United Nations

Laws affecting lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people vary greatly by country or territory; everything from the legal recognition of same-sex marriage to the death penalty as punishment for same-sex romantic/sexual activity or identity. Laws that affect LGBT people include, but are not limited to, the following:

As of March 2017, 23 countries,[e] the overwhelming majority of which are developed democracies and the rest being developing democracies, recognize same-sex marriage.

As of August 2018, 72 countries as well as four sub-national jurisdictions[f] have laws criminalizing homosexuality,[1] with most of these being African and Islamic countries. In 2006 that number was 92.[1] As of May 2016, 16 countries have an unequal age of consent law.[1]

In 2011, the United Nations Human Rights Council passed its first resolution recognizing LGBT rights, which was followed up with a report from the UN Human Rights Commission documenting violations of the rights of LGBT people, including hate crime, criminalization of homosexuality, and discrimination. Following up on the report, the UN Human Rights Commission urged all countries which had not yet done so to enact laws protecting basic LGBT rights.[2][3]

Contents

History of LGBT-related laws

Ancient Celts

According to Aristotle, although most "belligerent nations" were strongly influenced by their women, the Celts were unusual because their men openly preferred male lovers (Politics II 1269b).[4][5] H. D. Rankin in Celts and the Classical World notes that "Athenaeus echoes this comment (603a) and so does Ammianus (30.9). It seems to be the general opinion of antiquity."[5] In book XIII of his Deipnosophists, the Roman Greek rhetorician and grammarian Athenaeus, repeating assertions made by Diodorus Siculus in the 1st century BC (Bibliotheca historica 5:32), wrote that Celtic women were beautiful but that the men preferred to sleep together. Diodorus went further, stating that "the young men will offer themselves to strangers and are insulted if the offer is refused". Rankin argues that the ultimate source of these assertions is likely to be Poseidonius and speculates that these authors may be recording "some kind of bonding ritual ... which requires abstinence from women at certain times".[5]

Ancient India

Throughout Hindu and Vedic texts there are many descriptions of saints, demigods, and even the Supreme Lord transcending gender norms and manifesting multiple combinations of sex and gender.[6] There are several instances in ancient Indian epic poetry of same sex depictions and unions by gods and goddesses. There are several stories depicting love between those of the same sex, especially among kings and queens. Kamasutra, the ancient Indian treatise on love talks about feelings for same sexes. Transsexuals are also venerated e.g. Lord Vishnu as Mohini and Lord Shiva as Ardhanarishwara (which means half woman).[7]

Ancient West Asia

Ancient Israel

The ancient Law of Moses (the Torah) forbids men lying with men (intercourse) in Leviticus 18 and gives a story of attempted homosexual rape in Genesis in the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, the cities being soon destroyed after that. The death penalty was prescribed. In Deuteronomy 22:5, cross-dressing is condemned as being "abominable".

Ancient Persia

In Persia homosexuality and homoerotic expressions were tolerated in numerous public places, from monasteries and seminaries to taverns, military camps, bathhouses, and coffee houses. In the early Safavid era (1501–1723), male houses of prostitution (amrad khane) were legally recognized and paid taxes. Persian poets, such as Sa’di (d. 1291), Hafiz (d. 1389), and Jami (d. 1492), wrote poems replete with homoerotic allusions. The two most commonly documented forms were commercial sex with transgender young males or males enacting transgender roles exemplified by the köçeks and Sufi spiritual practices in which the practitioner admired the form of a beautiful boy in order to enter ecstatic states and glimpse the beauty of God.

Assyria

In Assyrian society, sex crimes were punished identically whether they were homosexual or heterosexual.[8] An individual faced no punishment for penetrating someone of equal social class, a cult prostitute, or with someone whose gender roles were not considered solidly masculine.[8][9] Such sexual relations were even seen as good fortune, with an Akkadian tablet, the Šumma ālu, reading, "If a man copulates with his equal from the rear, he becomes the leader among his peers and brothers".[10][11] However, homosexual relationships with fellow soldiers, slaves, royal attendants, or those where a social better was submissive or penetrated, were treated as bad omens.[12][13]

Middle Assyrian Law Codes dating 1075 BC has a particularly harsh law for homosexuality in the military, which reads: "If a man have intercourse with his brother-in-arms, they shall turn him into a eunuch."[14][15][16] A similar law code reads, "If a seignior lay with his neighbor, when they have prosecuted him (and) convicted him, they shall lie with him (and) turn him into a eunuch". This law code condemns a situation that involves homosexual rape. Any Assyrian male could visit a prostitute or lie with another male, just as long as false rumors or forced sex were not involved with another male.[17]

Ancient Rome

The "conquest mentality" of the ancient Romans shaped Roman homosexual practices.[18] In the Roman Republic, a citizen's political liberty was defined in part by the right to preserve his body from physical compulsion or use by others;[19] for the male citizen to submit his body to the giving of pleasure was considered servile.[20] As long as a man played the penetrative role, it was socially acceptable and considered natural for him to have same-sex relations, without a perceived loss of his masculinity or social standing.[21] The bodies of citizen youths were strictly off-limits, and the Lex Scantinia imposed penalites on those who committed a sex crime (stuprum) against a freeborn male minor.[22] Acceptable same-sex partners were males excluded from legal protections as citizens: slaves, male prostitutes, and the infames, entertainers or others who might be technically free but whose lifestyles set them outside the law.

"Homosexual" and "heterosexual" were thus not categories of Roman sexuality, and no words exist in Latin that would precisely translate these concepts.[23] A male citizen who willingly performed oral sex or received anal sex was disparaged, but there is only limited evidence of legal penalties against these men, who were presumably "homosexual" in the modern sense.[24] In courtroom and political rhetoric, charges of effeminacy and passive sexual behaviors were directed particularly at "democratic" politicians (populares) such as Julius Caesar and Mark Antony.[25]

Roman law addressed the rape of a male citizen as early as the 2nd century BC, when a ruling was issued in a case that may have involved a man of same-sex orientation. It was ruled that even a man who was "disreputable and questionable" had the same right as other citizens not to have his body subjected to forced sex.[26] A law probably dating to the dictatorship of Julius Caesar defined rape as forced sex against "boy, woman, or anyone"; the rapist was subject to execution, a rare penalty in Roman law.[27] A male classified as infamis, such as a prostitute or actor, could not as a matter of law be raped, nor could a slave, who was legally classified as property; the slave's owner, however, could prosecute the rapist for property damage.[28]

In the Roman army of the Republic, sex among fellow soldiers violated the decorum against intercourse with citizens and was subject to harsh penalties, including death,[29] as a violation of military discipline.[30] The Greek historian Polybius (2nd century BC) lists deserters, thieves, perjurers, and "those who in youth have abused their persons" as subject to the fustuarium, clubbing to death.[31] Ancient sources are most concerned with the effects of sexual harassment by officers, but the young soldier who brought an accusation against his superior needed to show that he had not willingly taken the passive role or prostituted himself.[32] Soldiers were free to have relations with their male slaves;[33] the use of a fellow citizen-soldier's body was prohibited, not homosexual behaviors per se.[34] By the late Republic and throughout the Imperial period, there is increasing evidence that men whose lifestyle marked them as "homosexual" in the modern sense served openly.[35]

Although Roman law did not recognize marriage between men, and in general Romans regarded marriage as a heterosexual union with the primary purpose of producing children, in the early Imperial period some male couples were celebrating traditional marriage rites. Juvenal remarks with disapproval that his friends often attended such ceremonies.[36] The emperor Nero had two marriages to men, once as the bride (with a freedman Pythagoras) and once as the groom. His consort Sporus appeared in public as Nero's wife wearing the regalia that was customary for the Roman empress.[37]

Apart from measures to protect the prerogatives of citizens, the prosecution of homosexuality as a general crime began in the 3rd century of the Christian era when male prostitution was banned by Philip the Arab. By the end of the 4th century, after the Roman Empire had come under Christian rule, passive homosexuality was punishable by burning.[38] "Death by sword" was the punishment for a "man coupling like a woman" under the Theodosian Code.[39] Under Justinian, all same-sex acts, passive or active, no matter who the partners, were declared contrary to nature and punishable by death.[40]

Congo

E. E. Evans-Pritchard recorded that in the past male Azande warriors in the northern Congo routinely took on young male lovers between the ages of twelve and twenty, who helped with household tasks and participated in intercrural sex with their older husbands. The practice had died out by the early 20th century, after Europeans had gained control of African countries, but was recounted to Evans-Pritchard by the elders to whom he spoke.[41]

Feudal Japan

In feudal Japan, homosexuality was recognized, between equals (bi-do), in terms of pederasty (wakashudo), and in terms of prostitution. The younger partner in a pederastic relationship often was expected to make the first move; the opposite was true in ancient Greece. In religious circles, same-sex love spread to the warrior (samurai) class, where it was customary for a boy in the wakashū age category to undergo training in the martial arts by apprenticing to a more experienced adult man. The man was permitted, if the boy agreed, to take the boy as his lover until he came of age; this relationship, often formalized in a "brotherhood contract",[42] was expected to be exclusive, with both partners swearing to take no other (male) lovers. The Samurai period was one in which homosexuality was seen as particularly positive. Later when Japanese society became pacified, the middle classes adopted many of the practices of the warrior class.

Lesotho

Anthropologists Stephen Murray and Will Roscoe reported that women in Lesotho engaged in socially sanctioned "long term, erotic relationships" called motsoalle.[43]

Papua New Guinea

In Papua New Guinea, same-sex relationships were an integral part of the culture of certain tribes until the middle of the last century. The Etoro and Marind-anim for example, even viewed heterosexuality as wasteful and celebrated homosexuality instead. They believed that in sharing semen, they are sharing their life force, yet women simply wasted this force any time they didn't get pregnant after sex. In many traditional Melanesian cultures a prepubertal boy would be paired with an older adolescent who would become his mentor and who would "inseminate" him (orally, anally, or topically, depending on the tribe) over a number of years in order for the younger to also reach puberty.[44]

Global LGBT rights maps

Timeline

Decriminalization of homosexuality timeline
Countries/Territories/States
Never been illegal
18th century
19th century
20th century
21th century
Unknown


LGBT-related laws by country or territory

Africa

List of countries or territories by LGBT rights in Africa
This table:

Northern Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGBT allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
  Algeria   Illegal since 1966
Penalty: Fine and up to 2 years imprisonment.[1][46]
           
  Canary Islands
(Autonomous community of Spain)
  Legal since 1979
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  De facto unions legal since 2003[47]   Legal since 2005[48]   Legal since 2005[49][50]   Spain responsible for defence   Bans all anti-gay discrimination[51]   Since 2007, all documents can be amended to the recognised gender[52]
  Ceuta
(Autonomous city of Spain)
  Legal since 1979
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  De facto union since 1998[53]   Legal since 2005[54]   Legal since 2005[55]   Spain responsible for defence   Bans all anti-gay discrimination[56]   Since 2007, all documents can be amended to the recognised gender[52]
  Egypt  /  Male de jure legal, but de facto illegal since 2000
Penalty: Up to 17 years imprisonment with or without hard labour and with or without fines under broadly-written morality laws.
  Female uncertain.[1][57]
           
  Libya   Illegal since 1953[58]            
  Madeira
(Autonomous region of Portugal)
  Legal since 1983
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  De facto union since 2001[59][60]   Legal since 2010[61]   Legal since 2016[62][63][64]   Portugal responsible for defence   Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[51]   Since 2011, all documents can be amended to the recognised gender[65]
  Melilla
(Autonomous city of Spain)
  Legal since 1979
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  De facto union since 2008[66]   Legal since 2005[54]   Legal since 2005[55]   Spain responsible for defence   Bans all anti-gay discrimination[56]   Since 2007, all documents can be amended to the recognised gender[52]
  Morocco
(including Southern Provinces)
  Illegal since 1962
Penalty: Up to 3 years imprisonment.[1][67]
           
  Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic
(excluding Southern Provinces)
  Illegal since 1944 (as part of the Overseas Province of Spanish Sahara)
Penalty: Up to 3 years imprisonment.[1][68][69]
           
  South Sudan   Illegal since 1899 (as Anglo-Egyptian Sudan)
Penalty: Up to 10 years imprisonment.[1][46]
    Constitutional ban since 2011        
  Sudan     Illegal since 1899 (as Anglo-Egyptian Sudan)
Penalty: Death penalty on third offense for men and on fourth offense for women.[1]
           
  Tunisia   Illegal since 1913 (as the French protectorate of Tunisia)
Penalty: 3 years imprisonment.[1][70]
Legalization proposed[71]
           

Western Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB allowed to serve openly in military? Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
  Benin   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[1][72]
Age of consent discrepancy[1]
           
  Burkina Faso   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[1]     Constitutional ban since 1991        
  Cape Verde   Legal since 2004
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
          Bans some anti-gay discrimination[1]  
  Gambia   Illegal since 1888 (as the Gambia Colony and Protectorate)
Penalty: Up to Iife imprisonment.[1][73][46]
           
  Ghana   Male illegal since 1860s (as the Gold Coast)
Penalty: 10 years imprisonment or more.
  Female always legal[1][74][46]
           
  Guinea   Illegal since 1988
Penalty: 6 months to 3 years imprisonment.[1][75]
           
  Guinea-Bissau   Legal since 1993[1]
+ UN decl. sign.
           
  Ivory Coast   Legal
(No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)
Age of consent discrepancy[1]
           
  Liberia   Illegal since 1976
Penalty: 1 year imprisonment.[1][76]
           
  Mali   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[1]            
  Mauritania     Illegal since 1983
Penalty: Death by stoning.[1][77]
           
  Niger   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)
Age of consent discrepancy[1]
           
  Nigeria   Illegal under federal law since 1901 (as the Northern Nigeria Protectorate and the Southern Nigeria Protectorate)
Penalty: Up to 14 years imprisonment.   Death in the states of Bauchi, Borno, Gombe, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Niger, Sokoto, Yobe, and Zamfara.[1][78][46]
           
  Senegal   Illegal since 1966
Penalty: 1 to 5 years imprisonment.[1][79]
           
  Sierra Leone   Male illegal since 1861 (as the Sierra Leone Colony and Protectorate)
Penalty: Up to life imprisonment (Not enforced).
  Female always legal
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
           
  Togo   Illegal since 1884 (as Togoland)
Penalty: Fine and 3 years imprisonment.[1][46]
           

Central Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB allowed to serve openly in military? Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
  Cameroon   Illegal since 1972
Penalty: Fines to 5 years imprisonment.[1][46]
           
  Central African Republic   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
    Constitutional ban since 2016[80]        
  Chad   Illegal since 2017
Penalty: 3 months to 2 years imprisonment.
           
  Democratic Republic of the Congo   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[1]     Constitutional ban since 2005        
  Equatorial Guinea   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[1]            
  Gabon   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)
+ UN decl. sign.
           
  Republic of the Congo   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)
Age of consent discrepancy[1]
           
  Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha
(Overseas Territory of the United Kingdom)
  Legal since 2001
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Legal since 2017   Legal since 2017[81][82]   Legal since 2017   UK responsible for defence   Constitutional ban on all anti-gay on discrimination  
  São Tomé and Príncipe   Legal since 2012
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
           

Southeast Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB allowed to serve openly in military? Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
  Burundi   Illegal since 2009
Penalty: 3 months to 2 years imprisonment.[1][83]
    Constitutional ban since 2005        
  Kenya   Illegal since 1897 (as the East Africa Protectorate)
Penalty: up to 14 years imprisonment.[1][46]
    Constitutional ban since 2010[84]        
  Rwanda   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[1]
+ UN decl. sign.
    Constitutional ban since 2003        
  Tanzania   Illegal since 1864 (only Zanzibar)
Illegal since 1899
Penalty: Up to life imprisonment.[1][46]
           
  Uganda   Male illegal since 1894
Penalty: Up to life imprisonment.[85][85]
  Female uncertain
    Constitutional ban since 2005        

Horn of Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB allowed to serve openly in military? Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
  Djibouti   Legal (No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)[1]            
  Eritrea   Illegal since 1957 (as part of the Federation of Ethiopia and Eritrea)
Penalty: Up to 3 years imprisonment.[1][86]
           
  Ethiopia   Illegal
Penalty: 10 years imprisonment or more.[1]
           
  Somalia     Illegal since 1962
Penalty: Up to death.[87]
           
  Somaliland (Disputed territory in Somalia)     Illegal
Penalty: Up to death.[87]
           

Indian Ocean States

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB allowed to serve openly in military? Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
  British Indian Ocean Territory
(overseas territory of the United Kingdom)
  Legal since 2001
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Since 2005, UK military personnel only   Since 2014, UK military personnel only     UK responsible for defence    
  Comoros   Illegal since 1982
Penalty: 5 years imprisonment and fines.[1][88]
           
  French Southern and Antarctic Lands
(Overseas territory of France)
  Legal
(No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the territory)[1]
  Civil solidarity pact since 1999   Legal since 2013   Legal since 2013   France responsible for defence   Bans all anti-gay discrimination   Under French law
  Madagascar   Legal
(No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the country)
Age of consent discrepancy[1]
           
  Mauritius   Male illegal since 1838 (as part of British Mauritius)
Penalty: Up to 5 years imprisonment.
  Female always legal[89]
+ UN decl. sign.[1][90]
          Bans all anti-gay discrimination[91][92]  
  Mayotte
(Overseas region of France)
  Legal
(No laws against same-sex sexual activity have ever existed in the region)[1]
  Civil solidarity pact since 1999   Legal since 2013   Legal since 2013   France responsible for defence   Bans all anti-gay discrimination   Under French law
  Réunion
(Overseas region of France)
  Legal since 1791[1]   Civil solidarity pact since 1999   Legal since 2013   Legal since 2013   France responsible for defence   Bans all anti-gay discrimination   Under French law
  Seychelles   Legal since 2016[93]
+ UN decl. sign.
          Bans some anti-gay discrimination[1]  

Southern Africa

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGB allowed to serve openly in military? Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
  Angola   De facto illegal since 1886 (as part of the Province of Angola)
Penalty: Fines, restrictions or penal labor (Not enforced).[1][94]
Legalization pending[95][96]
          Bans some anti-gay discrimination[97]   May possibly change gender under the Código do Registro Civil 2015[98]
  Botswana   Illegal since 1885 (as part of the Bechuanaland Protectorate)
Penalty: Fine to up to 7 years imprisonment (Not enforced).[1][46]
Legalization pending[99]
          Bans some anti-gay discrimination   Legal gender change recognized as a constitutional right since 2017[100]
  Lesotho   Male legal since 2012
Female always legal[1]
           
  Malawi   Illegal since 1891 (as part of the Shire Highlands Protectorate and the Nyasaland Districts Protectorate)
Penalty: Up to 14 years imprisonment and whippings (Law suspended from usage since 2012).[1][101][46]
           
  Mozambique   Legal since 2015[102][103]           Bans some anti-gay discrimination[1][91]  
  Namibia   Male illegal since 1920 (as part of South-West Africa)[46]
  Female always legal[1][104][105]
            Under the Births, Marriages and Deaths Registration Act 81 of 1963[106]
  South Africa   Male legal since 1998
Female always legal
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Limited recognition of unregistered partnerships since 1998; same-sex marriage since 2006   Legal since 2006   Legal since 2002   Since 1998   Bans all anti-gay discrimination   Anti-discrimination laws are interpreted to include gender identity; legal gender may be changed after surgical or medical treatment
  Swaziland   Male illegal since the 1880s
  Female always legal[1][46]
           
  Zambia   Illegal since 1911 (as part of the British South Africa Company rule of Rhodesia)
Penalty: up to 14 years imprisonment.[1][46]
           
  Zimbabwe   Male illegal since 1891 (as part of the British South Africa Company rule of Rhodesia)
  Female legal[1][46]
    Constitutional ban since 2013        

Americas

List of countries or territories by LGBT rights in the Americas



Tables:

North America

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGBT people allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
  Bermuda
(overseas territory of the United Kingdom)
  Legal since 1994 (age of consent discrepancy)
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Marriage from 2017 to 2018
Domestic partnerships since June 2018[107]
 /  Legal from May 2017 until May 2018.[108]   Legal since 2015[109]   UK responsible for defense.   Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[110]  
  Canada   Legal since 1969
+ UN decl. sign.[1][111]
  Domestic partnership in Nova Scotia (2001)[112];
Civil union in Quebec (2002)[113];
Adult interdependent relationship in Alberta (2003)[114];
Common-law relationship in Manitoba (2004)[115]
  Legal in some provinces and territories since 2003,
nationwide since 2005
.[116]
  Legal in some provinces and territories since 1996,
nationwide since 2010.[117]
  Since 1992[118]   Bans all anti-gay discrimination, and hate speech. Pathologization or attempted treatment of sexual orientation by mental health professionals illegal in Manitoba and Ontario since 2015 (proposed in other jurisdictions).   Transgender persons can change their gender identity or expression and name without completion of medical intervention and human rights protections explicitly includes gender identity or expression protections within all of Canada since 2017.[119][120][121][122]
  Greenland
(constituent country of the Kingdom of Denmark)
  Legal since 1933
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Registered partnership since 1996[123]   Legal since 2016   Step-child adoption since 2009.[124] Joint adoption since 2016.[125]   Since 1978 (Kingdom of Denmark responsible for defense)   Bans some anti-gay discrimination.[1]  
  Mexico   Legal since 1871
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
 /  Civil union in Mexico City (2007), Coahuila (2007),[126] Colima (2013),[127] Campeche (2013),[128] Jalisco (2014)[129]  /  Legal in Mexico City (2010),[130] Quintana Roo (2012),[131] Coahuila (2014), Chihuahua (2015), Guerrero (2015), Nayarit (2015), Jalisco (2016), Campeche (2016), Michoacán (2016), Colima (2016), Morelos (2016), Chiapas (2017), Puebla (2017), Baja California (2017).
All states are obliged to honour same-sex marriages performed in states where it is legal.[130]
(Proposed nationwide).[132][133]

The Supreme Court has declared that it is unconstitutional to deny marriage licenses to same-sex couples in all states,[134] but as state constitutions were not invalidated, individual injunctions must still be obtained from the court.[135][136]

 /  Explicitly legal in Mexico City (2010)[137], Coahuila (2014), Michoacán (2016), Colima (2016). [138]
Nationwide, married same-sex couples may adopt.[139]
    Constitutional ban on all anti-gay discrimination.[140]   Transgender persons can change their legal gender and name in Mexico City since 2008.[141] Mexico adopted a legal protocol for gender identity and sexual orientation in 2014 based upon constitutional provisions to equally protect the rights of all citizens.[142]
  Saint Pierre et Miquelon
(overseas collectivity of France)
  Legal since 1791
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Civil solidarity pact since 1999[143]   Legal since 2013[144]   Legal since 2013[145]     Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[56]   Under French law since 2017, sterilization was abolished for gender transitioning.[146]
  United States   Legal in some states since 1962,
nationwide since 2003.
[1]
  Domestic partnership in California (1999),[147] the District of Columbia (2002),[148] Maine (2004),[149] Oregon (2008),[150] Maryland (2008),[151] Wisconsin (2009)[152] and Nevada (2009)[153];
Civil union in New Jersey (2007),[154] Illinois (2011),[155] Hawaii (2012),[156] and Colorado (2013)[157]
  Legal in some states since 2004,
nationwide since 2015
.[158]
  Legal in some states since 1993,
nationwide since 2015.[159]
  "Don't ask, don't tell" policy was abolished by president Barack Obama in 2011, meaning that since then LGB people have been allowed to serve openly in the military.[160]
Despite U.S. president Donald Trump's opposition,[161] transgender people have been allowed to serve in the military as of January 1, 2018 according to a ruling by a federal judge.[162][163]
 /  Federal executive order prohibiting discrimination based on sexual orientation for employees in the federal civilian workforce, along with the government employment in the District of Columbia, and the United States Postal Service, since 1998 (see Executive Order 12968 and Executive Order 13087). Pathologization or attempted treatment of sexual orientation with minors by mental health professionals illegal in some states. (Banned in California, Connecticut, Illinois, New Mexico, Vermont, New York, Nevada, New Jersey, Oregon, Rhode Island, the District of Columbia and some cities such as Miami Beach, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh and Seattle). Included in the federal hate crimes law since 2009.
(Sexual orientation discrimination in public and private employment)
 /  Gender identity discrimination in healthcare insurance banned since 2012.[164][165] Included in the federal hate crimes law since 2009.
(Gender identity discrimination in public and private employment)

Central America

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGBT people allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
  Belize   Legal since 2016[166]           Section 16(3) of the constitution bans discrimination on the basis of sex, race, place of origin, political opinions, colour or creed[167] The ruling overturning Section 53 of the criminal code specifically stated "sex" as mentioned in Section 16(3) of the constitution, includes sexual orientation.[168][169]   Transgender persons can change their legal name without surgeries.

  Gender change is not allowed.[170]

  Costa Rica   Legal since 1971
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Unregistered cohabitation since 2014;
(De facto union pending)[171][172]
  (Court decision pending)  (Court decision pending) LGBT individuals may adopt.[173] Has no military.   Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[1]   Transgender persons can change their legal name without surgeries or judicial permission since 2018.[174]

Gender change is allowed, since 2018.

  El Salvador   Legal since the 1800s
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
    (Constitutional ban pending) [85]   (Constitutional ban pending) [85]  [175]   Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[175]   Bans hate crimes based on gender identity.[176][177]

  Transgender persons can change their legal name. Judicial permission required.

  Gender change is not allowed.[178]

  Guatemala   Legal since 1800s
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
          The only exception to this is the Código de la Niñez y la Juventud (Code on Childhood and Youth), approved in 1997, which protects children and youth from experiencing discrimination based on a variety of factors, including their own sexual orientation and that of their parents.   Transgender persons can change their legal name without surgeries. Judicial permission required.[179]

  Gender change is not allowed.

  Honduras   Legal since 1899
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
    Constitutional ban since 2005.[180][181]   Constitutional ban since 2005.[180][181]     Bans all anti-gay discrimination, including hate speech.[182]   Bans hate crimes based on gender identity.[1]

  Unknown if gender change is legal.

  Nicaragua   Legal since 2008
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
          Bans some anti-gay discrimination.[1]  
  Panama   Legal since 2008
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
 (Court decision pending)  (Court decision pending)   Has no military.   Bans some anti-gay discrimination.[183]

(Anti-discrimination law proposed).[184]

  Transgender persons can change their legal gender and name after completion of medical intervention since 2006.[185] Legal name change, without surgeries, is allowed since 2016.[186]

Caribbean

LGBT rights in: Same-sex sexual activity Recognition of same-sex unions Same-sex marriage Adoption by same-sex couples LGBT people allowed to serve openly in military Anti-discrimination laws concerning sexual orientation Laws concerning gender identity/expression
  Anguilla
(overseas territory of the United Kingdom)
  Legal since 2001
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
        UK responsible for defense.    
  Antigua and Barbuda   Illegal
Penalty: 15-year prison sentence (not enforced).[1]
           
  Aruba
(constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands)
  Legal
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Civil Unions since 2016[187]   (Proposed)/ [citation needed]
Same-sex marriages performed in the Netherlands recognized.[188]
  (Proposed)   The Netherlands responsible for defense.    
  Bahamas   Legal since 1991 (age of consent discrepancy)
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
       [1]    
  Barbados   Illegal
Penalty: Life imprisonment (not enforced) (Proposed) .[1]
           
  British Virgin Islands
(overseas territory of the United Kingdom)
  Legal since 2001
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
        UK responsible for defense.   Constitutional ban on all anti-gay discrimination.[189]  
  Caribbean Netherlands
(Bonaire, Sint Eustatius, Saba; Special municipalities of the Netherlands)
  Legal
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Registered partnership since 2012[190]   Legal since 2012[191]  [192]   The Netherlands responsible for defense.   Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[193]  [194]
  Cayman Islands
(overseas territory of the United Kingdom)
  Legal since 2001 (age of consent discrepancy)[1]
+ UN decl. sign.
   /  Same-sex marriage not expressly prohibited under Cayman Islands law, but Constitutional right of a man and a woman to marry a person of the opposite sex since 2009.[195] Same-sex marriages performed in a foreign country are now recognized for immigration purposes. [196]     UK responsible for defense.    
  Cuba   Legal since 1979
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  (Proposed)   Constitutional ban since 1976.    [1]   Bans some anti-gay discrimination.[197][198]  [199]
  Curaçao
(constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands)
  Legal
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  (Proposed)[citation needed]   (Proposed)/  Same-sex marriages performed in the Netherlands recognized.[188]   (Proposed)   The Netherlands responsible for defense.    
  Dominica   Illegal
Penalty: 10-year prison sentence or incarceration in a psychiatric institution (Not enforced)
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
           
  Dominican Republic   Legal since 1822
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
    Constitutional ban since 2010.[200]    [201]    
  Grenada   Male illegal
Penalty: 10-year prison sentence
  Female always legal.[1]
      Has no military.    
  Guadeloupe
(overseas department of France)
  Legal since 1791
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Civil solidarity pact since 1999[143]   Legal since 2013[144]   Legal since 2013[145]     Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[56]   Under French law since 2017, sterilization was abolished for gender transitioning.[146]
  Guantanamo Bay Naval Base
(extraterritorial jurisdiction of the United States)
  Legal[citation needed]     Legal   Legal   USA responsible for defense.[160][163]  [202]  [203]
  Haiti   Legal since 1986[1]       Has no military.    
  Jamaica   Male illegal
Penalty: 10 years hard labor (not enforced)
  Female always legal.[1]
    (Constitutional ban since 1962)        
  Martinique
(overseas department of France)
  Legal since 1791
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Civil solidarity pact since 1999[143]   Legal since 2013[144]   Legal since 2013[145]     Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[56]   Under French law since 2017, sterilization was abolished for gender transitioning.[146]
  Montserrat
(overseas territory of the United Kingdom)
  Legal since 2001
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
    Constitutional ban since 2010.[204]     UK responsible for defense.   Constitutional ban on all anti-gay discrimination.[205]  
  Puerto Rico
(Commonwealth of the United States)
  Legal since 2003   Since 2015   Legal since 2015[206]   Legal since 2015   USA responsible for defense.[160][163]   Bans hate crimes since 2002 and anti–employment discrimination since 2013. US hate crime laws also apply.   Bans hate crimes since 2002 and anti–employment discrimination since 2013. US hate crime laws also apply.
Gender change is legal since 2018, and does not require surgery for a gender change.
  Saint Barthélemy
(overseas collectivity of France since 2007)
  Legal since 1791
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Civil solidarity pact since 1999[143]   Legal since 2013[144]   Legal since 2013[145]     Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[56]   Under French law since 2017, sterilization was abolished for gender transitioning.[146]
  Saint Kitts and Nevis   Male illegal
Penalty: 10 years (not enforced).
  Female always legal.[1]
           
  Saint Lucia   Male illegal
Penalty: fine and/or 10-year prison sentence
  Female always legal.[1]
      Has no military.    
  Saint Martin
(overseas collectivity of France since 2007)
  Legal since 1791
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  Civil solidarity pact since 1999[143]   Legal since 2013[144]   Legal since 2013[145]     Bans all anti-gay discrimination.[56]   Under French law since 2017, sterilization was abolished for gender transitioning.[146]
  Saint Vincent and the Grenadines   Illegal
Penalty: fine and/or 10-year prison sentence.[1]
      Has no military.    
  Sint Maarten
(constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands)
  Legal
+ UN decl. sign.[1]
  (Proposed)[citation needed]   (Proposed)/  Same-sex marriages performed in the Netherlands recognized.[188]   (Proposed)   The Netherlands responsible for defense.