IraQueer is excited to announce the appointment of a new board consisting of seven LGBT+ Iraqis. The appointment of this board marks a historic milestone for IraQueer and the larger queer movement in Iraq as it’s the first publicly known organization to have a board consisting of only LGBT+ Iraqis.
The new board, which includes IraQueer’s founder, has members representing different parts of Iraq and different identities within the LGBT+ community. They bring with them a wide range of experiences as they work in different sectors including nonprofits and humanitarian organizations, education, and finance.
Most members of the board have chosen to stay anonymous for the time being giving the security risks that come with being public. However, this choice will not impact their ability to serve the organization and the wider LGBT+ community in Iraq. In fact, all board members are determined to use all their connections and resources to empower the organization and the LGBT+ community in Iraq.
One board member said “I joined IraQueer because I found a community where I can be myself, create bonds, and learn from similar experiences. I want the world to know that we exist and that we’ll always resist. I want to keep supporting IraQueer until we have an office in every Iraqi city.”
Another board member said “I joined because I believe that everyone deserves to love, be loved, and respected for who they are. Everyone deserves to be free without and live without fear. We at IraQueer believe in a safer Iraq for all citizens regardless of their sexual orientation or/and gender expression.” She continued to highlight the impact of IraQueer’s work and her hopes for the future; “I hope that we can create a safer place for LGBT+ citizens. We will support and advocate for them until LGBT+ Iraqis are recognized as equals, and I know the future is going to be better for us.”
For the next three years, members of the board are eager to work with IraQueer’s new Executive Director and the rest of the team to not only support IraQueer in continuing the work we’ve been doing for nearly seven years, but to also take it to the next level and continuing to push for a future in Iraq where the right of LGBT+ citizens are protected.