Rainbow Digest November 2022

Russia’s extended “anti-propaganda” law, Spain’s amendments to limit LGR for minors, and much more…

 

Help transform realities for LGBTI communities across Europe and Central Asia.With your support we can do more. Make change happen here.

No. 326. November 2022. In this issue…

ILGA-Europe

Bias-motivated violence

Bodily integrity

Decriminalisation

Equality and non-discrimination

Family

Foreign policy

Freedom of expression

Legal gender recognition

Notice board

 

ILGA-Europe

Strategic communications grantees met in Brussels for peer learning

From 16-18 November, as part of our strategic communications programme, a 3-day meeting took place in Brussels. Eleven people representing 5 organisations, alliances and coalitions from Bulgaria, Estonia, Georgia, Ireland and Slovenia participated the meeting for learning and peer-learning (as each organisation or group facilitated their own sessions) and discussions about some of the most difficult communications dilemmas. The participant organisations and groups are ILGA-Europe’s grantee-partners within the Supporting strategic communications by LGBTI organisations project.
Read more about our programme on strategic communications.
 

Our Annual Conference 2022: Photo essay

ILGA-Europe posted a photo-essay about the Annual Conference that took place in Sofia between 19-21 October and was hosted by the Bulgarian LGBTI organisations, Bilitis Foundation, Deystvie and Glas Foundation. Our photo essay, taken by Ukrainian photographer Marina Bandelyuk, aims to give a sense of the enthusiastic atmosphere, the vital networking, and the joy of being together as LGBTI activists from across Europe and Central Asia in person once more.
Check out our photo-essay.

Bias-motivated violence

Two more European countries added to annual report on trans murders

This year, for the first time, Estonia and Switzerland reported the murders of trans people. In total, the last twelve months saw 327 reported murders of trans and gender-diverse people in the world as a result of anti-trans violence, according to TGEU’s Trans Murder Monitoring. Although TGEU has been collecting information since 2008, most trans murders still go under-reported.
Read more on our blog post.
Access the full report from TGEU.
 

GREVIO publishes its report on Bosnia and Herzegovina

On 8 November, the Council of Europe Expert Group on Action against Violence against Women and Domestic Violence (GREVIO) published its first baseline evaluation report on Bosnia and Herzegovina. The report contains a comprehensive analysis of the implementation of the provisions of the Istanbul Convention. It acknowledges the steps taken by the country to comply with the treaty but identifies areas where progress is still needed. Among others, GREVIO calls on the government of Bosnia and Herzegovina to ensure that data collection on gender-based violence is intersectional and inclusive of violence against LBTI women.
Read more and download the copy of the report.

Bodily integrity

How activism led the way forward to protect intersex children in Greece

To mark Intersex Awareness Weeks, ILGA-Europe shared a blog post looking into the efforts and experiences of activists in Greece, who worked for many months alongside the national government, resulting in the country becoming just the fifth in the world to ban intersex genital mutilations on children. Intersex minors under the age of 15, living in Greece, are now protected from surgical operations and other invasive treatments.
Read more.
 

Decriminalisation

Ireland opened a public consultation on historic convictions of gay and bisexual men

On 4 November, Ireland’s Minister for Justice launched a consultation on the development of a scheme to disregard historic convictions of gay and bisexual men. The criminalisation of consensual sexual acts between men in Ireland came into effect prior to the foundation of the State and remained in place until its eventual decriminalisation in 1993. Although anyone may add their feedback, affected persons and representative organisations are particularly being encouraged to provide input on a number of key issues based on their lived experiences. The consultation is open until 9 December.

Equality and non-discrimination

Mandate of the Independent Expert on SOGI renewed for a second time, unchallenged

On 17 November, the Third Committee of the UN General Assembly adopted the resolution presenting the Annual Report of the Human Rights Council without a challenge to the renewal of the mandate of the Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination on the basis of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity (IE SOGI) for a second time. ILGA-Europe joined 1,256 non-governmental organisations from 149 States and territories in all regions supporting a campaign to renew the mandate.

 

Call for input to a thematic report on freedom of belief and SOGI

The Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, Victor Madrigal-Borloz, intends to present a thematic report to the 53rd session of the UN Human Rights Council in June 2023 on the right to freedom of religion or belief in relation to sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI). The Independent Expert invites all interested States, civil society organisations, faith-based institutions, faith leaders, academics, international organisations, national human rights institutions, activists, corporations, and others, to provide written input for his thematic report.


Family

Landmark judgement from the European Court on children’s rights in surrogacy cases

For the first time, the European Court of Human Rights has applied a ruling from the children’s rights perspective in surrogacy cases to same-sex families. In a judgement delivered on 22 November, in the case of ‘D.B. and Others v. Switzerland’, the European Court found that the right to private life (under Article 8 ) of the child born to same-sex couple through surrogacy was violated because of the non-recognition of the intended second parent. At the same time, the Court acknowledged that because surrogacy as a means to start a family is against Swiss public policy, and the parents knew this beforehand, the parents’ rights were not violated.

Foreign policy

Three Central Asian countries to join the UK’s Developing Countries Trading Scheme

Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan will be benefiting from the UK DCTS preferences (Developing Countries Trading Scheme) as of 1 January 2023. DCTS preferences are similar to those granted by the EU to countries with a GSP status. While Tajikistan and Uzbekistan benefit from DCTS’ LDC Standard preferences (Least Developed Countries), Kyrgyzstan will be benefitting from DCTS’ Enhanced preferences. The Enhanced preferences of UK DCTS scheme retains the power to suspend a country’s preferences for serious and systematic violations of human rights and labour rights based on 27 international conventions. LGBTI and human rights activists can use this trade scheme as a leverage to enter into dialogue with their governments on improving the human rights situation of LGBTI people in the respective countries.

Freedom of expression

Russian Parliament extended anti-LGBT propaganda law

On 24 November, the Russian Parliament adopted a new law extending the law on so-called “propaganda”. The new legislation bans any advertising, media, books, films, or theatre productions that are deemed to promote homosexuality or gender identity for all ages. These acts are now punishable with fines of up to 400,000 rubles (€6,400) or up to 5 million rubles (€80,000) for legal entities.

Legal gender recognition

Calling on the Spanish government to reject the amendments to limit LGR for minors

On 29 November, ILGA-Europe wrote a letter to the Spanish government regarding proposed amendments to the legal gender recognition reform. “We are concerned by recent reports regarding amendments which would weaken the law and limit access for minors” says the letter. Human rights-based LGR allows access for minors using the same method as adults. ILGA-Europe strongly encourage the rejection of amendments that would limit this access.

Notice board

RFSL has a funding for bi+ communities in Armenia, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine

RFSL, the Swedish Federation for LGBTQI rights, is currently accepting grant applications to support initiatives, groups and organisations, focusing on the unique needs of bi+ and queer movements from Armenia, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine. In addition to funding, grantees are offered capacity strengthening, professional development opportunities, advocacy mentorship and assistance in organisational development. Maximum grant amount for the call is 7 300 Euros.
Read more and apply before 8 January.

Applications open for the training on the UN human rights system for human rights defenders

International Service for Human Rights (ISHR) launched its application process for the new 2023 hybrid edition of the Human Rights Defender Advocacy Programme (HRDAP), which will take place both remotely and in Geneva. The course equips human rights defenders with the knowledge and skills to integrate the UN human rights system into their existing work at the national level in a strategic manner, and provides an opportunity for participants to prepare for and engage in lobbying and advocacy activities at the UN with the aim to effect change back home. (Photo: ISHR)
Read more and apply before 10 January.

Representatives of organisations can take part in the survey on fighting against prejudice-based violence

As part of the Counter Hate Project implemented in Spain, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Slovenia, and Lithuania, University of Brescia is conducting an online survey on improving the assistance of victims of hate crimes through a victim-centered and intersectional approach. The survey is addressed to representatives and practitioners of civil society organisations fighting against prejudice-based violence and promoting civil rights. It takes about 10 minutes to answer the questions.
Read more and take part in the survey.

Fellowship for frontline activist in need of respite

The Oak Fellowship has issued this year’s call for applications for the 2023 Oak Human Rights Fellowship, which annually offers an opportunity for a human rights activist to take leave from frontline work and spend the fall semester in residence at Colby College in Waterville, Maine, the United States. The focus of this year’s search is Health and Human Rights. The Oak Fellow will receive a stipend of $36,000, plus round-trip transportation from the Fellow’s home, housing, transportation, and meals on campus.
Read more and apply before 31 January.

EATG is recruiting peer researchers from sex workers and trans and gender diverse communities

European AIDS Treatment Group (EATG) is recruiting a team of three peer researchers to address the existing research gap for sex workers (all genders) and trans and gender diverse communities. The research activity will take place between December 2022 and November 2023. The selected community representatives will gain and/or strengthen their skills for the planning and implementation of peer-led research and generate needed data for local community advocacy.
Read more and apply before 6 December.

TGEU seeks a Senior Communications Officer

Transgender Europe (TGEU) is looking for an 80% Senior Communications Officer to begin by 1 March 2023 for an initial period of 24 months. The position is located in Berlin, Germany. The Senior Communications Officer will be responsible for TGEU’s external communications which includes the development and implementation of TGEU’s communication strategy as well as the coordination of TGEU’s media work, newsletter, websites, social media, campaigns, and publications.
Read more and apply before 16 December.

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