2019: Milestones for the LGBTQ community this year

By Sofia Pham

January 1 – Same-sex marriage legalized in Austria.

January 25 – New York becomes the 15th state to ban the use of conversion therapy on minos following a bill signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo.

February 1 – New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signs legislation requiring public schools to include contributions by LGBT and disabled people in their curriculum, making New Jersey the 2nd state behind California to do so.

February 15 – German Health Minister Jens Spahn, who is openly gay, voices intentions to ban conversion therapy.

March 27 – Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló signs an executive order banning conversion therapy on minors.

March 31 – International Transgender Day of Visibility celebrates transgender communities around the world.

April 23 – Tamil Nadu proposes a ban on sex reassignment surgeries on intersex infants unless in a life-threatening situation.

April 10 – Day of Silence, a national event in which students take a vow of silence, is held to highlight the erasure and mistreatment of LGBTQ people in school systems.

May 24 – Taiwan legalizes same-sex marriage.

May 17 – International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, and Biphobia is held to raise awareness of the struggles of the LGBTQ community.

June 30 – New York City WorldPride Parade marks Stonewall’s 50th anniversary and the first time the LGBTQ celebration is held in the United States.

June 30 – New York Governor Andrew Cuomo bans the use of the “gay panic” or “LGBTQ+ panic” legal defense strategy, a tactic that asks the jury to blame a victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity for a defendant’s violent reaction. 

July 3 – UK Methodist Church votes 247 to 48 at the Methodist Conference in Birmingham to move towards same-sex marriage, a proposal that requires a second vote in July 2020. 

July 9 – The UK votes 383-73 to extend marriage equality to Northern Ireland, a move that is secured in October.

August 28 – Tamil Nadu becomes the first Indian state to ban sex reassignment surgeries on intersex infants with the exception of life-threatening cases.

August 27 – In Australia, Victorian MPs vote 26 to 14 to allow trans people to change their sex on their birth certificate, sparking movements in other states to pass similar laws.

September 22 – Billy Porter wins Best Lead Actor in a Drama Series at the Emmys, becoming the first openly gay black man to do so.

September 6 – India court legalizes consensual gay sex.

October 22 – Marriage equality is extended to Northern Ireland.

October – LGBT History Month is celebrated in the U.S.

November 13 – Lil Nas X becomes the first openly gay black artist to win a Country Music Association Award for “Old Town Road.”

November 18 – Chick-fil-A announces it has stopped funding Christian organizations that oppose marriage equality.

December 18 – Germany’s Cabinet backs a law to punish practitioners of conversion therapy with up to one year in prison or a 30,000 euro fine.

December 16 – Claudia López, Bogotá, Colombia’s first female mayor, marries same-sex partner Angélica Lozano.

2019 had a variety of ups and downs for the LGBTQ community, but the progress made in terms of LGBTQ legislation and representation will pave the way for a brighter future and equality for the LGBTQ community, once and for all.

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