LGBT rights in Nauru

LGBT rights in Nauru

Same-sex sexual activity legal? Legal since 2016
Gender identity/expression -
Military service Has no military
Discrimination protections No[1]
Family rights
Recognition of
Adoption No[2]

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people living in Nauru face legal and social challenges not experienced by non-LGBT persons. Same-sex sexual activity is legal since May 2016, but there are no legal recognition of same-sex unions, protections against discrimination, or other protections.


Same-sex sexual activity was criminalised in 1921 when the island adopted the Criminal Code of Queensland (the Criminal Code 1899), which was retained following Nauruan independence in 1968.

In January 2011, Mathew Batsiua, Minister for Health, Justice and Sports, stated that the decriminalisation of "homosexual activity between consenting adults" was "under active consideration".[3][4] In October 2011, the government pledged to decriminalise same-sex sexual acts.[5][6][7]

According to the United States Department of State, there were no reports in 2012 of prosecutions directed at LGBT persons.[8]

In May 2016, the Parliament of Nauru passed the Crimes Act 2016 which repealed the Criminal Code 1899 and therefore legalised same-sex sexual activity.[9][10][11][12][13]

Summary table

Same-sex sexual activity legal (Since 2016)
Equal age of consent
Anti-discrimination laws in employment only
Anti-discrimination laws in the provision of goods and services
Anti-discrimination laws in all other areas (Incl. indirect discrimination, hate speech)
Same-sex marriages
Recognition of same-sex couples
Step-child adoption by same-sex couples
Joint adoption by same-sex couples
Gays and lesbians allowed to serve openly in the military Has no military
Right to change legal gender [1]
Access to IVF for lesbians
Commercial surrogacy for gay male couples
MSMs allowed to donate blood

See also


  1. 1 2 Nauru, one of the smallest countries in the world, decriminalizes gay sex
  2. "Nauru Government Stats". Retrieved 27 July 2015.
  3. [rtsp:// Address by Mathew Batsiua] to the United Nations Human Rights Council, January 24, 2010
  4. National Report of Nauru to the Human Rights Council, November 2010
  5. "Nauru". Retrieved 27 July 2015.
  7. "São Tomé and Príncipe to legalise gay sex". PinkPaper. 2011-02-14. Archived from the original on 2011-07-15. Retrieved 2011-02-25.
  8. United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. "Refworld - 2012 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices - Nauru". Refworld. Retrieved 27 July 2015.
  9. Nauru Government updates Criminal Code
  10. Nauru decriminalises homosexuality
  11. Homosexuality is now no longercriminalised on Nauru
  12. Crimes Act 2016
  13. Doherty, Ben (2016-05-29). "Nauru decriminalises homosexuality and suicide". the Guardian. Retrieved 2016-06-01.
Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Nauru.
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