Rainbow Digest October 2022


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No. 325. October 2022. In this issue…


Equality and non-discrimination


Hate crime

Legal gender recognition

Notice board



Annual Conference 2022 took place in Sofia between 19–22 October

After three years of not being able to gather in person, ILGA-Europe’s Annual Conference took place in the Bulgarian capital city of Sofia between 19-22 October. Around 350 people from around the world came together to connect and reconnect, to reflect, realign and identify ways to move our collective work forward as a European and Central Asian LGBTI movement. This year’s conference will be built under the ‘Shaping the World to Come’ theme with two cornerstones: ‘Building alliances in shifting contexts’ and ‘Collective resilience in the movement’.
Read more on our daily reports from the Conference.

New funding program for data-collection on violence in Europe and Central Asia

ILGA-Europe launched an opportunity for funding to collect and document data on cases of violence against the LGBTI communities in Europe and Central Asia. We will support proposals focusing on collecting evidence that provides advocacy insights on the situations around institutionalised violence as well as tackling lack of support to the victims of domestic violence based on their SOGIESC.
Read more and apply before 15 November.

Ljubljana to be the location for our Annual Conference in 2023

ILGA-Europe announced that the Slovenian capital of Ljubljana, in the heart of Central Europe, has been chosen as the location for our Annual Conference in 2023. We’re looking forward to beginning our work with LGBTI host organisations in Ljubljana to organise the 25th ILGA-Europe Annual Conference, and we’ll be announcing the exact dates as soon as they are tied down.
Read more.

Equality and non-discrimination

ECRI’s new monitoring report on Bulgaria

On 4 October, the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) published reports on their monitoring of Bulgaria, giving clear recommendations on LGBTI issues, including on hate speech and monitoring school bullying. The report indicates that in spite of ECRI’s recommendation in its latest report, “the authorities have not carried out any study or research into the situation of LGBTI people and did not develop legislation on gender reassignment and gender recognition as recommended by ECRI”. ILGA-Europe is “concerned with the government response, and call on governments to engage in monitoring exercises in good faith”.
Read more.

PACE calls to end discrimination against women in sports

On 13 October, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) adopted a new resolution on ending discrimination against women in the world of sport. The resolution calls to end discrimination against women in sports and includes explicitly LBTI women’s needs. The Assembly condemns the hate speech and sexism directed at female athletes, including LBTI athletes and calls for efforts to promote access to sport for all women and notes that discrimination against LBTI women has a negative impact on women in general.

European Coalition on Sex Workers’ Rights and Inclusion was launched

On 13 October, on the occasion of European Sex Workers’ Rights Alliance’s first Congress, 15 organisations have come together to announce the launch of the European Coalition on Sex Workers’ Rights and Inclusion. These leading civil society networks and human rights organisations have come to the same conclusion: criminalisation is not the solution. It is only by adopting a human rights approach, decriminalising sex work, and meaningfully including sex workers and sex worker rights defenders in decision-making that sex workers can be protected.


New campaign: “What about intersex seniors?”

On 26 October Intersex Awareness Day, OII Europe launched a new campaign on the situation of intersex seniors. Older intersex people face very specific challenges and needs, and while there is still very little knowledge and research available on this particular topic, OII Europe’s campaign wants to highlight some of the few existing findings on senior intersex folks, as well as creating a platform for community-based knowledge. (Illustration: OII Europe)


Slovenian National Assembly voted for marriage equality and adoption

On 4 October, The National Assembly in Slovenia signed same-sex marriage and adoption into law by passing changes to the family code. The changes define marriage as a union of two persons and allow same-sex partners to adopt children under the same conditions as those that apply to all married couples. Drafted by the government, the bill was passed two months after the Constitutional Court announced a landmark ruling deeming discriminatory the definition of marriage as a union of a man and a woman, and the inability of same-sex partners to adopt.

Hate crime

Attack outside an LGBTI bar in Bratislava took two people’s lives

On 12 October, two young LGBTI people were killed outside an LGBTI bar in Bratislava. In their statement, LGBTI group Iniciatíva Inakosť said “The fact that the murder has chosen LGBTI people as target is the result of a long and systematic campaign against LGBTI people by state officials, churches and extremist groups”. Two days after the attack, the LGBTI organisations organised a vigil to commemorate Matus and Juraj who were cut down in the prime of their lives. Estimated 20.000 people attended the vigil. (Photo by Pride Bratislava)

CoE event on combating SOGIESC-based hate crime took place in Dublin

On 27 October, the Irish Ministry for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, the Irish Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the Council of Europe SOGI Unit, with the support of the United Kingdom Government Equalities Office, co-organised a roundtable on ‘Right to life, security and protection from violence: combating SOGIESC-based hate crime across Europe.’ Findings and outcomes from the discussions at the roundtable will be reflected in the report of the annual thematic review of Council of Europe Recommendation on measures to combat discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation or gender identity, which will be presented to the Steering Committee on Anti-Discrimination, Diversity and Inclusion (CDADI) for adoption in 2023.

Legal gender recognition

Scottish Parliament voted for the bill on LGR

On 27 October, the Members of the Scottish Parliament voted in favour for the reform of the Gender Recognition Act with 88 voting in favour and 33 against. The bill foresees to make the process by which trans people can update the sex on their birth certificate simpler and fairer. The bill now moves to Stage 2 and continues its legislative process.

Depathologisation was at the centre of the EP hearing for the first time

On 27 October, the European Parliament organised a hearing to discuss how the question of the legal status of trans persons can be taken out of the medical field. MEPs from the Committees on Civil Liberties and Public Health discussed the pivotal role of health professionals can have in ensuring that trans and non-binary persons are not stigmatised and discriminated against in the medical sector, and that they are able to fulfil their right to health by ensuring their access to quality health care.

Notice board

ITF has new grant cycle for trans-led organisations

The International Trans Fund (ITF) announced their 7th grant cycle for applications from trans-led organisations with budgets below $100,000 USD based in any region of the world. The ITF has two grant types: the SEED grant which is a 1-year general support and/or project grant for trans-led organisations that have never been funded by the ITF and the THRIVE grant which is a 1-year general support grant only for trans-led organisations that have been previously funded by the ITF.
Read more and apply before 12 December.

Take part in the survey on lesbophobia

The EuroCentralAsian Lesbian* Community – EL*C is conducting research on the cases of lesbophobia from Europe and Central Asia. You can share information about cases of lesbophobic violence that have happened in your country in the past years. You can use whatever data you have available (even from your personal experience).
Read more and fill out the form.

The European Institute for Gender Equality has open vacancies

The European Institute for Gender Equality (EIGE) has published several vacancies, including a traineeship and an expert on gender mainstreaming. The traineeship opportunity on Knowledge Management & Communications lasts six months for graduates who are either nationals of an EU Member State or an EFTA country or an IPA qualifying country. EIGE also invites applications with a view to establishing a reserve list for the post of Seconded National Expert– Gender Mainstreaming who will support the Institute’s activities in developing and applying various methods, tools and technical assistance for the integration of a gender perspective in different policy areas at various levels of the EU.
Read more and apply for the positions.