ILGA decided to postpone the Conference
ILGA recently agreed to send Stephen Barris, ILGA Communications Officer, to Quebec to report on the situation regarding the organization of the ILGA World Conference 2008. His report was received and discussed on March 7, 2008.
After due consideration of the findings in the report and the obligations that ILGA has in holding a World Conference, the Executive Board of ILGA decided to postpone the Conference until later this year.
Stephen's report confirmed the impressions of the current lack of preparedness at this late date and the lack of funding necessary for the Conference to take place.
In order to proceed with the organization of the Conference, ILGA would have to assume the substantial financial risks and would have to seek funding to cover most of the costs at extremely short notice. Even if this was successful, it would beimpossible to make all the arrangements to have a quality Conference that respondedto our needs and obligations as well as to the needs and aspirations of our worldwide membership. It is also clear that participation from the Global South through scholarships would be very limited, at best, and this is a fundamental component of an ILGA World Conference.
ILGA wishes to thank all those who volunteered and worked towards organizing the Conference and particularly to the CGLQ (Coalition gaie et lesbienne du Québec) for their efforts. We are aware that the new leadership of CGLQ enthusiastically took over this challenging task at a late date and committed to pursuing the task as far as possible.
ILGA is now making a formal call for new proposals from ILGA member organizations for hosting the World conference later this year.
Among the items such proposals should address are the following:
* What venue and dates are the potential host organizations proposing for the conference? ILGA is hoping to have at least 200-300 participants at the conference, including a substantial number of activists from the Global South on scholarships. The proposal should indicate the proposed size of the conference, the different accommodation options and the envisioned cost for paying participants.
Potential hosts can also outline what they would envision as the "local" part of the conference program.
* Proposals will need to indicate clearly how the conference will be funded. Which funders have they successfully contacted about funding for the conference? We want to stress that ILGA does not have the capacity to fully fund the conference. The local hosts have in the past fundraised for resources, especially to bring scholars from the Global South.
* What LGBTI groups and other human rights organizations (feminist, trade unions ...) are they co-operating with in preparation for the conference? Are they officially working with local, regional/state or national governments?
* Information about the team of volunteers (and paid staff) that would be working on the ILGA conference.
* Information about the political context for organizing an ILGA conference in the proposed host city.
* What steps the organizers would take to facilitate the granting of visas to delegates from Africa, Asia and Latin America? What the security situation would be for delegates whose gender identity or gender expression might make them targets for violence and whether they have spoken to the authorities about this.
Proposals in the form of a letter of candidature (addressing the listed items) should be received by the ILGA office by April 7 (please send this letter to firstname.lastname@example.org).
Rosanna Flamer-Caldera and Philipp Braun
On behalf of the Executive Board of ILGA