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No. 199, March 2012 - in this issue:










Dear EU – make sure that gender matters…

Statement from ILGA-Europe and PICUM on the International Women's Day 2012:
ILGA-Europe and PICUM used the day as an opportunity to call for a proper gender mainstreaming in the current negotiations of important European Union policies. We called for the EU institutions to include and mainstream gender in all its forms in all its adoption of new legislation and all legislation should automatically reflect all discrimination grounds.
Read the full statement here

ILGA-Europe visits partner organisations in Western Balkan

In the end of March, ILGA-Europe visited partner organisations within the Step Up! project on the Western Balkans. On 23 and 24 March we supported the team of Alliance Against LGBT Discrimination (Aleanca)-LGBT organisation based in Tirana, Albania to devise their 3 year organisational Strategic Plan. On 27 and 28 March, we conducted a training session on Human Rights Violations Documentation and Advocacy with Step UP project’s partner organisation in BiH- Sarajevo Open Centre. More info and images will come up later on our website.
Read more about Step Up! project here


Council of Europe conference on combating sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination

As part of its six months chairmanship of the Council of Europe, the United Kingdom held a conference on 27 March on "Combating Discrimination on the Grounds of Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity across Europe – Sharing knowledge and moving forward". The purpose of the Conference was to look at how member states can make progress in implementing the Recommendation of the Committee of Ministers on combating sexual orientation or gender identity discrimination, which was adopted in March 2010. The Conference was the first LGBTI rights related event ever sponsored by as part of the official programme of a country during its chairmanship of the Council of Europe.
Read more about the conference here

The European Parliament wants all-around equality for LGBT people

The European Parliament adopted its annual report on equality between women and men in the European Union. The text looks at recent advances in gender equality, and includes several recommendations for LGBT rights.
Read more about the adoption on the website of the European Parliament's Intergroup on LGBT Rights

Parliamentary Assembly Equality and Non-Discrimination Committee appoints General Rapporteur on LGBT issues

Norwegian MP Håkon Haugli has been elected to the newly created position of General Rapporteur on LGBT issues by members of the Parliamentary Assembly's Equality and Non-Discrimination Committee. According to the press release issued by the Norwegian Parliament after Mr Haugli’s unanimous election, Committee Chair, Ms Tina Acketoft of the Swedish Parliament stated that the entire Committee would stand behind Mr Haugli as rapporteur, and that this support would be especially important as the challenges in the field of LGBT issues are great throughout Europe.
Read more about the election of Håkon Haugli as rapporteur here

Hearing in the European Parliament on “Unblocking the anti-discrimination Directive”

On 20 March 2012, ILGA-Europe together with other equality NGOs was invited to speak at the hearing on the proposed anti-discrimination directive organised by the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE) in the European Parliament.

Turkish army needs "proof" of homosexuality

Albanian Ombudsman in closer cooperation with Albanian LGBT activits

Govenor of St. Petersburg signs ‘propaganda’ law

The governor of St. Petersburg Georgiy Poltavchenko signed the homophobic law, imposing administrative fines on the so-called "propaganda of sodomy, lesbianism, bisexuality, transgenderism" and paedophilia to minors.
Read the statement from the St. Petersburg LGBT organization Coming Out here


Landmark report and panel on sexual orientation and gender identity in the United Nations Human Rights Council

The United Nation's Human Rights Council in Geneva held the first-ever formal UN inter-governmental debate on violence and discrimination against LGBT people, and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights presented a groundbreaking report.

Greek LGBT organisation: 'Greece is lying in the UN about protection of LGBT people'


European Parliament stands up for same-sex families’ free movement

The European Parliament adopted its annual report on EU citizenship, in which it laments that same-sex couples and their families still face disproportionate obstacles when moving inside the European union.
Read more about the adoption on the website of the European Parliament's Intergroup on LGBT Rights

Dissapointing referendum results in Slovenia on equality for same-sex couples and their families

Second parent adoption made possible in Swizerland for same-sex couples

Italy now recognises foreign registered partnerships and marriages of same-sex couples 

The legal birth of NELFA, European Network of LGBT Families Associations

NELFA - the Network of European LGBT Families Associations - was incorporate under Belgian law as an international non-profit association (AISBL) on March 12 2012. Official NELFA headquarters will be located in the Rainbow House in Brussels.
Read more about NELFA and its legal birth here


Prime Minister backs Albania’s first Pride event

First Pride event to take place in Kiev, Ukraine

For the first time a public Pride event will be organised in Kiev, the capital city of Ukraine. The event is planned to take place on 19-21 May 2012.
Read more about the Pride event here


Sexual orientation and gender identity proposed to be included in criminal law in Georgia

Right-wing group leader sentenced to 10 months for hate speech in Serbia


Montenegro will finance gender reassignment procedures for trans people

Constitutional Court in Serbia rules for the first time in favor of a trans person

The Constitutional Court of the Republic of Serbia has accepted the plea of the person who after the sex change operation did not get the right to a change of name in the birth register. 

Transgender Europe's statement on trans people and public transport

After a EU wide survey, Transgender Europe issued a statement on how trans passengers often are affected in their safety, security and dignity by staff and fellow passengers. The survey revealed that 79% of trans people reported harassment in public and 43% of trans respondents in a national survey feel “less well treated” in the street.
Read more about trans people and public transport here


Job opportunity - Human Rights Officer at The European Disability Forum

The European Disability Forum is looking for a Human Rights Officer with good knowledge and experience on human rights, non-discrimination, and equality including gender equality issues. Note deadline: 6 April 2012.
Find more information about the job opportunity here

Job opportunity - Administrative Agent – ICT and Logistics at The European Institute for Gender Equality

The European Institute for Gender Equality in Vilnius is looking for an Administrative Agent – ICT and Logistics. Note deadline 31 March 2012 at 23:00 Eastern European Time.
Read more about the job opportunity here

New publication - ‘Far right parties and discourse in Europe: A challenge for our times’

The European Network Against Racism (ENAR) has launched a publication on European far-right parties and their discourse. The publication explores how the far-right is spreading throughout Europe and influencing conservatives and political parties in government alike.
Download the publication here

The PES Group in the Committee of Regions dedicates photo competition to the European Year

As a commitment to the European Year for Active Ageing and Solidarity between Generations the Party of European Socialist (PES) Group in the Committee of the Regions dedicates in 2012 its annual photo competition to break stereotypes about ageing. Under the title "Life 2.0 – Ready for a new start" the fifth edition of the competition invites EU residents of any nationality aged 18 and over to capture the notion of Active Ageing with their cameras.
Read more about the competition and how you can enter here

International Archives, Libraries, Museums and Special Collections Conference on the Future of LGBTI Histories (LGBTI ALMS 2012)

The conference will consolidate the knowledge of archiving as a tool in building democratic and free societies and making LGBTI histories accessible to all.
Read more about the conference here

Nordic LGBT Workplace Forum & Career Fair

The purpose of the Nordic LGBT Career Fair is to introduce top talent to LGBT-friendly employers. The fair is expected to attract LGBT students, experienced professionals and allies in order to connect a diverse talent pool with potential employers.
Read more about the career fair here

European Master’s Degree in Human Rights and Democratisation

E.MA is an intensive one-year master's programme aimed at educating professionals in human rights, democracy, peace and development. The programme offers an action- and policy-oriented approach to learning which combines interdisciplinary perspectives with skills building activities.
Read more about the opportunity here

Training opportunities for NGOs

ILGA-Europe is gathering good training opportunities for NGOs. If you have good experiences - then do not hesitate to share them with us (euro-letter@ilga-europe.org)
Mango is an award-wining UK registered charity. Their mission is to strengthen the financial management and accountability of NGOs and their partners.
InProgress is a dynamic social enterprise offering training, facilitation, and supporting services NGOs worldwide in support of their work.


ILGA-Europe Rainbow Digest is published by ILGA-Europe - the European Region of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans & Intersex Association

ISSN 1998-8117
Editor: Mehmet Akin
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This publication has been produced with the financial support of the Rights Equality and Citizenship (REC) programme 2014-2020 of the European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of ILGA-Europe and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Commission.