South African Members of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer or Questioning and Intersex community (LGBTQI) protest outside the Tanzania High Commission on November 26, 2018 in Pretoria.
Photo Credit: Phil Magakoe, AFP / Getty Images via CNN
Last week, the Southern African nation of Angola passed new legislation officially decriminalizing same-sex activities. This was the first change to the country’s penal code in over 40 years and marks a victory for the global LGBTQ community.
"In casting aside this archaic and insidious relic of the colonial past, Angola has eschewed discrimination and embraced equality." ~ Human Rights Watch via CNN
The Angolan government has also created a new set of laws that ban discrimination against people because of their sexual orientation. Now, employers can face up to two years in jail for refusing employment or services to LGBTQ members based on sexual orientation.
While this is great news for the LGBTQ community, 72 countries around the world still criminalize same-sex activities. LGBTQ community members in many African countries can face serious persecution. In Nigeria, LGBTQ members risk a 14-year jail sentence, while anyone found guilty of being in a same-sex relationship in Tanzania faces a 30-year jail sentence.