Princess to attend gay meeting and discuss prejudice

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

In an announcement described by LGBT activists as “historically significant,” a spokesman for the Dutch Royal Family has confirmed that the country’s future Queen will attend a gay rights conference.

Argentinean-born Princess Maxima, the wife of Crown Prince Willem-Alexander, will meet delegates from Holland’s major cities at the event and speak out against the exclusion of gay people.

A royal spokesman said: “The Princess is in favour of equal rights of all groups in the Netherlands.”

The 36-year-old Royal, who has three daughters, is married to the heir to the throne, the Prince of Orange.

Frank Van Dalen of Dutch gay rights group COC said:

“This will be a historically significant royal presence.

“This is what we have been hoping for a very, very long time.

“It is the first time a member of the Royal Family has attended a meeting with such significance for gays.”

Holland has a reputation as one of the most tolerant countries in the world.

In 2001 it was the first country in the world to allow same-sex marriages.

Amsterdam’s image as the ‘gay capital of the world’ also under threat, however.

A substantial increase in homophobic attacks in the city has been reported over the last few years, leading two of the government coalition parties – Labour and the Christian Democrats – to call for tougher punishments for anti-gay violence.

In August 2007 half of Dutch gays said they feel less safe than they did a year ago in a survey carried out by current affairs programme EenVandaag.

Sixty-four per cent of anti-gay incidents were verbal but 12 per cent resulted in physical abuse.

Of the 23,000 people questioned, including 1,980 gays and lesbians, 61 per cent still maintained the Netherlands is a gay-friendly country.

Comments (0)

MyPinkNews members are invited to comment on articles to discuss the content we publish, or debate issues more generally. Please familiarise yourself with our community guidelines to ensure that our community remains a safe and inclusive space for all.

Loading Comments