Latvia legislates in favour of gays and lesbians at work

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Latvian legislators have endorsed a ban on sexual discrimination against gay men and lesbians in the workplace, reversing an earlier decision that earned them sharp criticism at home and abroad, Agence France-Presse reports.

This decision reverses a failed vote to ban discrimination in the workplace against Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered people (LGBT) in June. the failure to implement the ban drew strong criticism from human rights and gay and lesbian groups but also from Prime Minister Aigars Kalvitis and President Vaira Vike-Freiberga.

However, not all parliamentarians were as outraged at the reversed legislation; Janis Smits, from the centrist Latvia First Party, voted against the amendment: “This ban means that a small, marginal group will be protected, while other groups of normal people can still be discriminated against.”

Mr Smits had previously stated that implementing a ban on sexual-orientation discrimination could potentially “open the floodgates to pederasty, lesbianism, pedophilia, zoophilia, and will legalise other pathologies.”