There are Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender individuals in every country in the world, but acceptance varies greatly by region. Some communities are very supportive and provide safe spaces to be "out," while in other regions, expressing your sexual and/or gender identity could put you at risk for harassment or violence. If you are a LGBT student, it's important to do a little research before you depart. Here are some general safety tips and resources:
- Know the local laws regarding same-sex relations.
- Familiarize yourself with norms and styles of behaviors in the host country. Be aware that in some regions, even perceived same-sex desire (i.e. dress and behavior) may put you at risk.
- Do a little research into your host country's LGBT community before you depart. Utilize travel guides and websites to identify LGBT-friendly bars, restaurants, neighborhoods etc.
- Since openly expressing your sexual orientation and/or gender identity could put you at risk in some countries, talk with your Study Abroad Adviser about whether or not you should come-out to your host family and be "out" in your host country.