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Statement by Andrew Gilmour, Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, at the Nasdaq stock exchange, before ringing the opening bell on behalf of the UN Human Rights Office, New York, 12 January 2018

Thank you very much indeed for that warm welcome and for the great honor that it is for us to open on behalf of the United Nations Human Rights Office the New York business day.

It's an important time for lesbian, gay, bi, trans and intersex people around the world.

As the video that we are showing out on Times Square at this very moment makes all too clear, the lives of millions of LGBTI people are marred by violence, discrimination and business has a crucial role to play in helping to right these wrongs.

Our Office has devised and launched in recent months in New York, Mumbai, Paris, London, Melbourne and Hong Kong business standards setting out steps that companies can take to make the workplace -- and indeed the wider world -- a better, safer and fairer place for LGBTI people.

46 of the world's largest corporations have already signed up, in the last few months, to these standards and our hope is that every company listed on the Nasdaq -- and indeed many other companies as well – our hope is that all of these companies can take up the challenge and seize the opportunity to try to make the world better place for LGBTI people. Let us seize that opportunity. Thank you so much.