#SaferToBeMe - Our upcoming global Symposium of LGBTQI+ Human Rights and the Sustainable Development Goals

A full day face-to-face symposium event held at Hope Street Xchange at the University of Sunderland, U.K. and a series of one-hour (online) satellite events, held before the conference. 


Date: 22nd June 2023 

Times: TBA

What is #SaferToBeMe? 

ReportOUT have partnered with the University of Sunderland to develop a global symposium to bring together global activists, practitioners, and academics, to discuss the most pressing issues facing global LGBTQI+ human rights, and LGBTQI+ progress toward fulfilling the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).  

This conference will fill a void left behind after the cancellation of the U.K. government’s proposed ‘Safe to Be Me’ conference, which we have called #SaferToBeME 

After this symposium ends, we hope to develop a legacy via a Global Knowledge Exchange Forum to push for the human rights, and the development needs, of sexual and gender minorities across the globe, and to bring specialists together to do this. We hope you will be part of this! 


Our call for papers: 

Before we launch our full plan and tickets for this symposium, we are requesting a call for papers to talk at either the symposium itself, or the online satellite events, from global academics, practitioners, and activists. If you cannot attend the symposium on the day, then you also have an option to speak at one of the online satellite events. We hopefully will be able to ‘beam you in’ live to a room at the symposium itself if you do not want to speak at an online satellite event. 

What do you want to apply for? 

You can apply for the symposium, or an online satellite event, or both! Information about applying for both can be found below.

What talks and workshops are we after for the online satellite events? 

The online (Zoom) satellite events will be our ‘warm up’ events held in the week running up to the symposium day, and we are expecting a good attendance at them. Online satellite events last for one hour, and are less restrictive than the strands of the symposium, and may come in different formats spread over human rights and international development, such as: 

·        An interview ‘fire side’ style format, where you are the expert on a particular issue or country regarding the human rights of sexual and gender minorities, and we have a chat with you about it. 

·        A one-hour public talk on a topic regarding human rights or queering the SDGs, where you take the lead and present to others. 

·        A problem-based learning activity, where you present a problem around the SDGs or human rights and engage the audience to find a solution to it. 

What talks and workshops are we looking for at the symposium? 

For the symposium we are expecting a packed crowd, as this is our highlight day! For this, we are after a talk or workshop which focuses on one of the following three strands: 


Human rights in nation states and regions: These are talks or workshops about the human rights situation of a particular nation state for sexual and gender minorities, or the human rights situation of a particular region for sexual and gender minorities (for example, Afghanistan, Russia, Uganda, or a region such as the Gulf States, or Central Asia) 


Human rights themes: These will be thematic talks or workshops about a particular issue or theme linked to the human rights of sexual and gender minorities (for example, activism, young people, corrective rape, LGBTQI+ people and war, migration and diaspora, disability, conversion practices, Pride events, pink washing by a nation state, and so on) 


International development and the SDGs: A talk about sexual and gender minorities, and their engagement (or lack thereof) with international development mechanisms and the UN SDGs. For example, focusing on one (or more) of the UN SDGs, such as queer links to poverty, gender equality, safe institutions, climate action, critiquing the SDGS, and so on.

If you would like to submit more than one talk for a separate strand, then please submit twice. You can also apply for your talk to be an online satellite event, should you wish.  

We are after dynamic, accessible, and interesting papers, which will be of use to a general and mixed audience of academics, practitioners, activists, and the interested public. Avoid being overly academic as we want the event to be accessible to all.

What is the deadline? 

The deadline for calls for papers for both symposium and online satellite events is Friday 25th November 2022 by midnight, U.K. time.  

Interested in applying for the online satellite events or speaking at the symposium?  

Please apply to the symposium or for the online satellite events here: