Glossary

Click one of the letters above to advance the page to terms beginning with that letter.

A

Acquit search for term

To discharge a defendant in a criminal case following a verdict of not guilty

Adjourned search for term

Temporary suspension of a case by a court. The court, or either of the parties in a court case, can request an adjournment for specific reasons.

Amicus curiae search for term

A person or group who is not part of a lawsuit, but has a strong interest in the matter, will petition the court for permission to submit a brief in the action with the intent of influencing the court's decision. Amicus curiae is Latin for "friend of the court." (Cornell Law School)

Appellant search for term

A person who is appealing to a higher court

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B

Bail search for term

Release of a defendant from custody, until his/her next appearance in Court, subject sometimes to security being given and/or compliance with certain conditions. (UK Ministry of Justice Glossary of Legal Terms)

Bisexual search for term

When a person is emotionally and/or sexually attracted to persons of more than one sex. (ILGA-Europe Glossary)

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C

Checks and balances search for term

Also known as Seperation of Powers. A political doctrine of constitutional law under which the three branches of government (executive, legislative, and judicial) are kept separate to prevent abuse of power. Each branch is given certain powers so as to check and balance the other branches. (Cornell Law School Legal Dictionary)

Committal Proceedings search for term

A preliminary hearing in a magistrates court to decide if there is a case to answer. (Source: Collins Dictionary Online)

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D

Discovery of Documents search for term

Mutual exchange of evidence and all relevant information held by each party relating to the case. (Source: UK Ministry of Justice Glossary of Legal Terms)

Discrimination search for term

Unequal or unfair treatment which can be based on a range of grounds, such as age, ethnic background, disability, sexual orientation or gender identity. Can be divided into four different types of discrimination (direct, indirect, multiple and experience) which all can lead to victimisation and harassment. (ILGA-Europe Glossary). IGLA-Europe further define different forms of discrimination in their glossary.

Duty of care search for term

The principle that directors and officers of a corporation in making all decisions in their capacities as corporate fiduciaries, must act in the same manner as a reasonably prudent person in their position would. (Source: Cornell Law School Legal Dictionary)

Duty of carecapacities as corporate fiduciaries, must act in the same manner as a reasonably prudent person in their position would search for term
Cornell Law School defines duty of care as: The principle that directors and officers of a corporation in making all decisions in their

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G

Gay search for term

A person who feels sexual and/or emotional desire exclusively or predominantly for persons of her or his own sex. The term has however been misused to cover all gay men and lesbians (and sometimes even bisexuals). This has been widely discussed, and gay should therefore only be used when it is referring to men are emotionally and/or sexually attracted to other men. If the intention is to cover all without intentional excluding any sexual orientation or gender identity/expression, then it is recommendable not to use only the term gay, and instead use LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex people). (Source: ILGA Europe Glossary)

Gender search for term

Gender refers to people's internal perception and experience of maleness and femaleness, and the social construction that allocates certain behaviours into male and female roles which vary across history, societies, cultures and classes. Gender is hence strongly linked to society's expectations and is not exclusively a biological matter. (Source: ILGA Europe Glossary)

Gender identity search for term

The Yogyakarta Principles defines gender identity as: each person's deeply felt individual experience of gender, which may or may not correspond with the sex assigned at birth. Gender identity includes the personal sense of the body (which may involve, if freely chosen, modification of bodily appearance or function) and other expressions of gender, including dress, speech and mannerisms.

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H

Heteronormativity search for term

Refers to the assumption that there are two complementary sexes, male and female, and that heterosexuality is the normal and the only acceptable sexual union. When heterosexuality is perceived as the norm, people with a different sexual orientation or trans* or any other gender non-conforming identity, are often seen and treated as a threat to this order.

Homonationalism search for term

Homonationalism occurs when sub-sectors of specific gay communities achieve legal parity with heterosexuals and then embrace racial and religious supremacy ideologies.

Source: Pathos.com author unknown

Homophobia search for term

The fear, unreasonable anger, intolerance or/and hatred toward homosexuality. Homophobia can appear in various ways:

Internalised Homophobia: when lesbian, gay men and bisexual people are considering and accepting heterosexuality as the correct way of being and living.

Institutionalised Homophobia: when governments and authorities are acting against equality for LGB people. This can be hate speech from public elected persons, ban on pride events and other forms of discrimination of LGB people.

ILGA Europe Glossary

Homosexual search for term

People are classified as homosexual on the basis of their gender and the gender of their sexual partner(s). When the partner's gender is the same as the individual's, then the person is categorised as homosexual. It is recommended to use the terms lesbian and gay men instead of homosexual people. The terms lesbian and gay man are being considered neutral and positive, and the focus is on the identity instead of being sexualised. Lastly, the term homosexual has for many a historical connotation of pathology. (Source: ILGA-Europe Glossary

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I

Inspections of Documents search for term
Arrangements made by the parties to allow mutual exchange and copying of documents.
International Convention search for term

International convention or treaty is the typical instrument of international relations. Treaty is defined by the 1969 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties as an 'agreement concluded between States in written form and governed by international law, whether embodied in a single instrument or in two or more related instruments and whatever its particular designation'

Intersex search for term

A term that relates to a range of physical traits or variations that lie between ideals of male and female. Intersex people are born with physical, hormonal or genetic features that are neither wholly female nor wholly male; or a combination of female and male; or neither female nor male. (source: Organisation Intersex International).

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J

Jurisdictions search for term

The area and matters over which a Court has legal authority.

Jury search for term

The body of jurors sworn to reach a verdict according to the evidence in a Court (Juror: A person who has been summoned by a Court to be a member of the jury). (Source: UK Ministry of Justice'Glossary of Legal Terms)

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L

Legal Aid search for term

State funded assistance, for those on low incomes, to cover legal fees.

Lesbian search for term

A woman who is sexually and emotionally attracted to women

LGBT search for term

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender

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M

Mitigation search for term

Reasons submitted on behalf of a guilty party in order to excuse or partly excuse the offence committed in an attempt to minimise the sentence. (Source: UK Ministry of Justice Glossary of Legal Terms)

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N

Notary public search for term

Someone who is authorised to swear oaths and certify the execution of deeds. (Source: UK Ministry of Justice Glossary of Legal Terms)

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P

Patriachy search for term

Means 'rule of fathers' and refers to a system based on male supremecy, male privilege and the subordination of women.

Philosophy of law search for term

(Or legal philosophy) is concerned with providing a general philosophical analysis of law and legal institutions. Issues in the field range from abstract conceptual questions about the nature of law and legal systems to normative questions about the relationship between law and morality and the justification for various legal institutions. (Source: The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

Pinkwashing search for term
The term 'pinkwashing' was originally coined in relation to the cynical use of breast cancer awareness campaigns by companies profiting from the association of the campaign with their products. More recently, pinkwashing has come to refer to a Public Relations tactic which uses an image of LGBTI tolerance to pronounce social progress and modernity, often to avoid drawing attention to, or deflecting attention away from other human rights abuses and unpopular approaches. Pinkwashing is most commonly used in reference to Israel, which has used opposition to homophobia as a tool to build support for Israel and weaken support for Palestine.
Poverty search for term

In 1995 the United Nations adopted two definitions of poverty. 1. Absolute poverty was defined as: a condition characterised by severe deprivation of basic human needs, including food, safe drinking water, sanitation facilities, health, shelter, education and information. It depends not only on income but also on access to services. 2. Overall poverty takes various forms, including: lack of income and productive resources to ensure sustainable livelihoods; hunger and malnutrition; ill health; limited or lack of access to education and other basic services; increased morbidity and mortality from illness; homelessness and inadequate housing; unsafe environments and social discrimination and exclusion. It is also characterised by lack of participation in decision making and in civil, social and cultural life. It occurs in all countries: as mass poverty in many developing countries, pockets of poverty amid wealth in developed countries, loss of livelihoods as a result of economic recession, sudden poverty as a result of disaster or conflict, the poverty of low-wage workers, and the utter destitution of people who fall outside family support systems, social institutions and safety nets. These are relative definitions of poverty, which see poverty in terms of minimum acceptable standards of living within the society in which a particular person lives. (UN, 1995)

Pro Bono search for term

Legal service provided voluntarily by law firms, law schools and attorneys without monetary compensation. Pro bono comes from Latin pro bon publico, for the public good. (Source: Cornell Law School Legal Dictionary)

Prosecution search for term

The institution or conduct of criminal proceedings against a person.

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S

Separation of Powers search for term

A political doctrine under which branches of government are kept separate to prevent abuse of power. Each branch is given certain powers so as to check and balance the other branches. Also known as checks and balances. (Source: The Information Institute at Cornell Law School)

Sex search for term

The biological makeup such as primary and secondary sexual characteristics, genes, and hormones. The legal sex is usually assigned at birth and has traditionally been understood as consisting of two mutually exclusive groups, namely men and women. However, "[t]he Court of Justice has held that the scope of the principle of equal treatment for men and women cannot be confined to the prohibition of discrimination based on the fact that a person is of one or other sex. In view of its purpose and the nature of the rights which it seeks to safeguard, it also applies to discrimination arising from the gender reassignment of a person. In addition to the above, the legal definition of sex should also include intersex people." (source: ILGA Europe Glossary)

Sexual minorities search for term
A term more commonly used in the Global South and East which refers not to specific identities or sexual orientations but to how individuals and groups are perceived.
Sexual Orientation search for term

Each person's capacity for profound emotional and sexual attraction to individuals of a different gender, the same gender or more than one gender, and to the capacity to have sexual relations with them. (Source: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development)

Stigma search for term
Stigma means different things to different people. This is one dictionary's definition:

"The shame or disgrace attached to something regarded as socially unacceptable."

People who are stigmatised are marked out as being different and are blamed for that difference. There may be a feeling of 'us and them'.

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T

Trans search for term

Trans Person/People/Man/Woman: is an inclusive umbrella term referring to those people whose gender identity and/or a gender expression differs from the sex they were assigned at birth. It includes, but is not limited to: men and women with transsexual pasts, and people who identify as transsexual, transgender, transvestite/cross-dressing, androgyne, polygender, genderqueer, agender, gender variant or with any other gender identity and/or expression which is not standard male or female and express their gender through their choice of clothes, presentation or body modifications, including undergoing multiple surgical procedures. (Source: IGLA Europe Glossary)

Transgender search for term

Trans people who live permanently in their preferred gender, without necessarily needing to undergo any medical interventions. Until recently, this term was also the primary umbrella term referring to all trans people, but this use is now losing favour to the term 'trans' which is perceived to be more inclusive of all trans communities. ILGA-Europe is using the wider inclusive term trans in its work. (Source: ILGA-Europe Glossary)

Transphobia search for term

Transphobia: refers to negative cultural and personal beliefs, opinions, attitudes and behaviors based on prejudice, disgust, fear and/or hatred of transpeople or against variations of gender identity and gender expression. Institutional transphobia manifests itself though legal sanctions, pathologisation and inexistent/inadequate mechanisms to counter violence and discrimination. Social transphobia manifests itself in the forms of physical and other forms of violence, hate speech, discrimination, threats, marginalisation, social exclusion exoticisation, ridicule and insults. (Source: ILGA-Europe Glossary)

Transsexual search for term

Transsexual: refers to people who identifies entirely with the gender role opposite to the sex assigned to at birth and seeks to live permanently in the preferred gender role. This often goes along with strong rejection of their physical primary and secondary sex characteristics and wish to align their body with their preferred gender. Transsexual people might intend to undergo, are undergoing or have undergone gender reassignment treatment (which may or may not involve hormone therapy or surgery). (Source: ILGA-Europe Glossary)

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U

Undemocratic search for term
The Collin's Dictionary defines undemocratic as: not characterized by, derived from, or relating to the principles of democracy.

The term undemocratic is often used to refer to oppressive political power structures which act to limit personal freedoms.

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