EU debates homophobia

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The European Parliament is this evening debating a resolution on homophobia in Europe.

The resolution strongly condemns homophobia and discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation in EU member states and calls on European institutions to promote and protect the human rights of all persons regardless of their sexuality.

While some EU member states have enforced laws against sexual discrimination, many still practice and even promote discrimination and intolerance against gay people.

Last year gay marches promoting equality and tolerance were banned or hindered by authorities in Poland, Latvia and Romania. Poland closed the nation’s equality body, which dealt with various forms of discrimination including on the grounds of sexual orientation.

Latvia remains the only EU member state, which despite the requirement of the EU Employment Equality Directive did not explicitly ban sexual orientation discrimination in employment and has now amended its constitution to ban same-sex marriage. A similar proposal is being debated in Lithuania.

Patricia Prendiville, Executive Director of the International Lesbian and Gay Association-Europe, said: “We call on the European institutions to ensure that the issue of sexual orientation equality is considered and regarded as equally important as the issues of racism, sexism, ageism and discrimination on the grounds of disability.”

Source: International Lesbian and Gay Association (ILGA)

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