ILGA Europe has just released the latest edition of its Rainbow Europe package, which shows that while the human rights of LGBTI people have undoubtedly gained great visibility across Europe, progress in terms of real legal, political and social changes vary considerably from one country to another.
The package is composed of the Rainbow Europe Map 2014, which reflects the 49 European countries’ legislation and policies that have a direct impact on the enjoyment of human rights by LGBTI people, and of the Annual Review of the Human Rights Situation of LGBTI People in Europe 2014, which provides an analysis of trends and an overview of key political and social developments country-by-country.
The Rainbow Europe Map
The Rainbow Europe Map 2014 shows that the European average on the measure of legal protection is still very low – only 36%. The average for EU countries (46%) does not even reach the half-way mark. This said, the gaps between European countries remains enormous and ranges between the top score of 82% (UK) and the bottom score of 6% (Russia). Most worryingly, 34 out of 49 European countries (including 14 EU Member States) are below 50% mark.
The Annual Review – the social situation
When it comes to the overall political and social situation of LGBTI people, the Annual Review 2014 highlights four main trends in Europe:
- New forms of criminalisation of LGBTI people are increasing through the spread of anti-propaganda laws and some countries adopting laws and policies to restrict the human rights of LGBTI people (Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Latvia and Ukraine)
- While there is a growing consensus on marriage equality, Europe also witnesses the emergence of movements against marriage equality (France) and in favour of legal bans to pre-empt future changes of definitions of marriage (Croatia, Slovakia)
- Homophobic and transphobic violence remains high and is often fuelled and validated by some political and religious authorities; violence against trans people remains particularly of great concern;
- Discrimination continues to occur virtually in all countries and in all spheres of life of LGBTI people.