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Threat to Gays in Europe’s Streets and Schools

  • May 27th, 2013
  • Posted by EU Australia

Gay bridgeA large scale survey has shown persistent discrimination on sexual preference in Europe.

The European Union has been making slow progress to bring its population of ‘GLBT’ people, gay-lesbian-bisexual-trans-gender, fully into the mainstream of life — in line with the anti-discrimination clauses in its fundamental treaties.

THE LONG CAMPAIGN

FRAThat is not for want of trying, with a strong push for change mounted in the last decade by the European parliament and European Commission.

The EU’s Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) reported four years ago, producing a report that proposed enforcement legislation, an EU Directive, to be taken up all of the member countries:

“The social situation … is worrying. In recent years a series of events in EU Member States, such as the banning of Pride marches, hate speech from politicians and intolerant statements by religious leaders, have sent alarming signals and sparked a new debate about the extent of homophobia and discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transsexual and transgendered (LGBT) persons in the European Union.

“Such events led the European Parliament to adopt in 2005 a resolution condemning homophobia and sexual orientation discrimination.

“Two years later in the summer of 2007 the European Parliament asked the newly established Fundamental Rights Agency to develop a comprehensive comparative Report covering all EU Member States on the situation regarding homophobia and sexual orientation discrimination. In response the Agency carried out a large scale legal and social research project during 2007 and 2008…”

TRYING AGAIN

On the premise that knowledge creates power, with the Eurostat service it has continued to document conflict and discrimination; backing up the moves for a stronger, Europe-wide law against discriminatory acts and abuse. 

The 2012 survey now released (17.5.13) documents the continuing trouble, as reported by the EU:

“People who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered (LGBT) continue to experience widespread discrimination and harassment, according to the largest survey ever conducted among the LGBT community in Europe.

“Nearly half (47%) of LGBT people said they had personally felt discriminated against or harassed on the grounds of sexual orientation in the past year, while one in four (26%) had been attacked or threatened with violence in the last five years.

“The survey was carried out by the … FRA among more than 93,000 people in the EU and Croatia, and released on 17 May to mark International Day against Homophobia.

“It shows that members of the LGBT community continue to experience violence and harassment at school, work or other parts of daily life. For example, 91% of respondents said they heard or read negative comments about LGBT people while they were still in school.”

Same sex demo 2012In the background, resistance to change appears in many forms: Hundreds of thousands turned out in France on the weekend to reiterate and continue opposition to legislation permitting same-sex marriage, now signed into law by President Francois Hollande; (others vowing to continue their campaigns to support it). In the neighbourhood, outside of the European Union, the law against “homosexual propaganda” in Russia has followed a discriminatory pattern, with crack-downs against expression of any ay identity, drawing widespread international opprobrium.

Reference

 

European Parliament, Brussels, Day against homophobia: new survey reveals scale of discrimination in Europe, 17.5.13. Humahttp://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/headlines/content/20130508STO08096/html/Day-against-homophobia-new-survey-reveals-scale-of-discrimination-in-Europen rights ? 17-05-2013 – 09:06, (26.5.13).

 

FRA (European Union Agency for Fundamental Human Rights), Vienna, Homophobia and Discrimination on Grounds of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in theEU Member States:2009. http://fra.europa.eu/sites/default/files/fra_uploads/397-FRA_hdgso_report_part2_en.pdf, (26.5.13).

Le Monde, Paris, Manif pour tous, l’ultime démonstration de force, (‘Everyone’s proEtst’ – anti gay marriage – the ultimate show of strength), 26.5.13.

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