Bulgaria court rules in favour of woman who called all gay people ‘perverts’
Bulgaria’s Supreme Court has sided with a singer who branded gay people “perverts”.
Writing on Facebook in 2021, Bulgarian punk star Milena Slavova said: “I am sure I do not support gay parades. Poor us – normal people – are already suffocating from the brazenness and flaunting of various perverts.
“And I don’t apologise for my words.”
Her post went viral and was used to bolster right-wing propaganda in the country.
In response to the post, two LGBTQ+ activists from Deistvie (Action) filed a discrimination case against the singer.
Prior to their complaint, the EU Commission for Protection against Discrimination declared that Slavova’s words were her personal opinion, to which she is entitled.
Now, three supreme magistrates have sided with the singer. They ruled that she didn’t intend to cause harm to the dignity of a particular person due to their sexual orientation, Euractiv reported.
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Last year, the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance called on Bulgaria to crack down on anti-LGBTQ+ behaviour. However, queer rights in Bulgaria remain poor.
In February, the country’s supreme court ended any possibility of changing personal documents after gender-reassignment surgery.
In September, the European Court of Human Rights found Bulgaria’s government was violating European human rights law by failing to legally recognise same-sex couples, with Human Rights Watch calling on the Balkan nation to “act swiftly to implement the court’s judgment and protect same-sex couples’ rights to private and family life”.
Some progress has been made. In July, a bill passed parliament, amending the criminal code to include sexual orientation as protected grounds in hate crime cases. But, Equaldex’s Equality Index, which measures the status of LGBTQ+ rights as well as public attitudes towards the queer community around the world, ranks Bulgaria 42nd out of 100.
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