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Uniting for Equality: UKPC's Statement on International Women's Day 2023

Kampala, March 8th:

On this International Women’s Day, we stand in solidarity with Lesbians, Bisexual and Queer (LBQ) women, and sex workers, recognizing their unique struggles and contributions to the fight for gender equality. This year’s theme of DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality highlights the potential of technology to break down barriers and promote equal opportunities for all women, including those who have been historically marginalized.

The Uganda Key Population Consortium (UKPC) was formed to bring together representatives of Key Populations (KPs) to collectively define and advocate for issues of common concern including response to shrinking resources and space for key population-led organizations. The UKPC thus serves as an advocacy platform coordinating strategic action and supporting systems and structure strengthening for all members.

Richard Lusimbo, UKPC Director General, says: “International Women’s Day is a time to celebrate the achievements of women and to reflect on the challenges they continue to face. As we mark this day, we must remember that gender equality cannot be achieved without addressing the specific needs and concerns of LBQ women and sex workers, who are often excluded from mainstream feminist movements. The UKPC is committed to ensuring that these communities are heard and represented, and that their rights and dignity are upheld.”

Macklean Kyomya, UKPC Board Member, adds: “The theme of DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality is particularly relevant for LBQ women and sex workers, who often face unique barriers to accessing information and services. By harnessing the power of technology, we can create new pathways for these communities to connect, learn, and advocate for their rights. At the same time, we must ensure that technology is used ethically and with the full participation of those it is meant to serve. The UKPC is proud to stand with LBQ women and sex workers in the fight for equality and justice.”

We call on all individuals, organizations, and governments to embrace a feminist, intersectional approach to innovation and technology, one that values diversity, equity, and inclusion. Only by working together can we create a world where all women have access to the tools and resources they need to thrive.