LGBTI equality and human rights in Europe and Central Asia

October 2018

October 2018: Annual Conference, job opportunities at ILGA-Europe, boycott for the referendum in Romania, and much more...


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No. 277. October 2018. In this issue...


Annual Conference 2018



Freedom of Expression

Hate Crime

Legal Gender Recognition

Notice Board



Three exciting job vacancies at ILGA-Europe

ILGA-Europe are looking for a Communications Director, a Senior Advocacy Officer, and a Digitalisation Fellow to work with the staff team in Brussels. We ensure our people remain our greatest asset, so we look forward to you joining our team. You can apply for the position of Communications Director until 13 November, for the Senior Advocacy Officer until 16 November, and the Digitalisation Fellow until 6 November.
Read more about the job profiles and procedure.

NEW REPORT: Second Review of the Council of Europe Recommendation on LGBT Rights

In 2010, the recommendations of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity were established, and they agreed to review the implementation of the process. In 2018, ILGA-Europe and TGEU supported 11 LGBTQI and 5 trans organisations in preparing the second phase of country reports which would review 16 member states. Along with individual country reports, ILGA-Europe, TGEU, and OII-Europe have also launched a summary report of findings.
Read more about the CoE agreement.
Read the summary report in full.


Annual Conference 2018

Rainbow Search: Year in review from #IEWarsaw2017 to #IEBrussels2018

Since the 2017 Annual Conference in Warsaw, LGBTI activists, groups, and organisations in Europe and Central Asia have faced so many questions... We found both negative and positive answers to those questions. Watch our Year in Review video with Rainbow Search to see all the answers.
Watch it now.

A strong call for change – right at the heart of the European political system

At one of the largest ever ILGA-Europe Annual Conferences, hundreds of equality and diversity organisations came together to issue a strong call for change – right at the heart of the European political system. Over 550 LGBTI activists and allies gathered together between 24-27 October in Brussels, at a time when populism, nationalism, anti-equality groups and right-wing extremism are prominent features – infiltrating both our news headlines and our daily lives. And LGBTI equality is at the forefront of all of this.
Read the press statement in full.
All information about the Conference.

Group photo for the Intersex Awareness Day: ‘Protect intersex children!’

The participants of 2018 Annual Conference came together on 26 October to take a group photo to mark the Intersex Awareness Day and to highlight the challenges still faced by intersex people in today's society. OII-Europe has decided to focus on intersex children this year and prepared many materials to help the parents of intersex children, so we gathered in the hotel lobby with our intersex flags and signs saying ‘Protect intersex children!’
Read OII-Europe and IGLYO’s toolkit for parents of intersex children.
Watch the video prepared by OII-Italia and supported by our Creating Opportunities programme.

Help us continue the scholarship programme

74 activists were able to attend the 2018 ILGA-Europe Annual Conference on a full or partial scholarship thanks to our generous supporters. We need your help to provide this opportunity to even more activists next year. Make a difference and donate to the Diversity Fund today.
Donate to the Diversity Fund.



“Open minds are needed to improve the protection of LGBTI asylum seekers in Europe”

The Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe has published a human rights comment on LGBTI asylum seekers. Dated on 11 October, the comment discusses the problems that LGBTI asylum seekers face in Europe, such as lack of legal protection, non-application of international standards, problems of safe reception and others.
Read the human rights comment.
Check our Rainbow Map for asylum laws in Europe.


Voters in Romania boycott restrictive referendum on definition of family

PACE’s resolution on rainbow families adopted

Bosnia and Herzegovina to set up a working group for partnership law

Freedom of Expression

Censorship of LGBTI symbols at a stadium in Georgia

Hate Crime

Equality Movement NGO activists attacked

Four activists from Equality Movement NGO were attacked by their neighbours in the backyard of their office building on 28 September. The perpetrators assaulted them verbally and physically and threatened them with weapons. According to Equality Movement’s latest statement the police officials who arrived spoke to the victims aggressively and didn’t intervene when the perpetrators continued to assault and attack the victims. Equality Movement have reported that verbal insults from their neighbours continued after the incident on 28 September. As a result, they have decided to close their office.

Legal Gender Recognition

European human rights body slams forced sterilisation in the Czech Republic

A court decision made public on 1 October has found that the Czech Republic is violating the human rights of transgender people as guaranteed by the European Social Charter. The case had been brought jointly by TGEU and ILGA-Europe in 2015 in cooperation with local activists using the collective complaint mechanism. It is the first transgender discrimination case decided under that procedure. The Committee of the Social Charter found that the legal requirement for transgender persons in the Czech Republic to undergo medical sterilisation seriously impacts a person’s health, physical and psychological integrity, and dignity.
Read more.
See Czech Republic country page on Rainbow Europe.

Notice board

#ilga40: Share your memory of ILGA

ILGA has turned 40 years old! ILGA want to celebrate the anniversary at the ILGA World Conference in Aotearoa / New Zealand, which will take place from 18-22 March 2019. They are waiting for your contributions to this great celebration as they want to recount the history of ILGA’s first 40 years with lots of materials. You can share your memory of ILGA by submitting your conference posters, photos, personal memorabilia etc. from the last 40 years and also react on social media with the hashtag #ilga40.
See more details about the anniversary.

New report on experiences of LGBTI people in Southeastern Europe

The report “Life on the Margins: Survey Results of the Experience of LGBTI people in South Eastern Europe” has been launched by the World Bank in partnership with ERA and the Williams Institute at UCLA and it analyses the responses of more than 2,300 LGBTI persons across seven countries in the Western Balkans region: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Croatia, and Slovenia.
Read the report.

ERA Conference took place in Macedonia

The Equal Rights Association for Western Balkans and Turkey, held its third annual conference in Skopje, Macedonia on October 3-6 with the theme “Against all odds we claim the future.” ILGA-Europe participated along with activists from across the Balkans and Turkey. For the first time, the first day of the conference was dedicated to a Regional Ministerial Meeting hosted by the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs of Macedonia, and the day’s panel discussions featured government officials and LGBTI activists alike.
More about the conference.