The International Conference on LGBT Human Rights started on Wednesday 26 July in Montreal's convention centre, the Palais des Congrès, located in the heart of the city. Political figures from the Government of Canada and the Government of Quebec were be present at the opening dinner and the closing lunch including the Mayor of Montreal, M. Gérald Tremblay. Also of note was the presence of Ms. Louise Arbour, the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights.
Conference participants had five plenary sessions, featuring a number of internationally-renowned keynote speakers, and were able to choose from at least 200 workshops (40 simultaneously during each of five workshop sessions), which dealt with the many aspects of the five Conference themes: Essential Rights, Global Issues, the Diverse LGBT Community, Participation in Society, and Creating Social Change. The Conference also featured two "sub-conferences" (Workers Out! and Out for Business!), and a series of workshops (Out in Sport).
The Conference is gathered together about 2000 people from around the world to discuss LGBT human rights.
At the close of the Conference, the Declaration of Montréal (available in english, french and spanish) was presented to the participants. The goal is to present this Declaration to the United Nations and to national governments, in order to mobilize unequivocal support for LGBT rights. This will be one of the many marks of the Conference, a legacy that will be enriched by the participation of many people from different backgrounds.