LGBTI equality and human rights in Europe and Central Asia

ILGA-Europe map on legal situation for LGB people in Europe, 2009

Prior to OutGames and its International Human Rights Conference in Copenhagen in the end of this month where ILGA-Europe take part, we published a map of Europe reflecting the legal situation for lesbian, gay and bisexual people.

Updated in July 2009.

The ‘Rainbow Europe’ map reflects legal advanced such as protection from discrimination, recognition of  LGB families and parenting rights, inclusion of sexual orientation in hate speech/crime legislation. The map also highlights the ‘darker’ corners of ‘Rainbow Europe’ where there is still criminalisation of consenting same-sex acts, unequal age of consent and there Pride events have been banned during last 10 years.


Summary of the mapped legal situation for lesbian, gay and bisexual people in Europe:


  • 2 countries’ constitutions refers to sexual orientation in their anti-discrimination provisions
  • 13 countries and 1 territory bans sexual orientation discrimination in employment
  • 25 countries and 5 territories ban sexual orientation discrimination in employment, access to good and services
  • 15 countries refer to sexual orientation in hate speech/crime legislation
  • 5 countries allow same-sex partners to marry
  • 13 countries and 2 territories allow same-sex partners to register their partnerships
  • 13 countries recognise cohabitation of same-sex partners
  • 9 countries entitle same-sex partners to apply for joint adoption
  • 11 countries allow that same-sex partners can adopt each other biological child of child(ren)
  • 10 countries provide fertility treatment for lesbian couples

Spots of discrimination and inequality:

  • 2 countries and 3 territories still have unequal age of consent for all sexual acts
  • 1 territory still criminalises consenting sexual acts between adult men
  • 8 countries banned LGBT public events during the last 10 years

For printed copy, please e-mail us your name, postal address and number of maps requested.

You can also download below - NOTE: the quality for the files is not for printing. Contact Nanna Moe, ILGA-Europe Communications Officer, to get high resolution files