LGBTI equality and human rights in Europe and Central Asia

Good news as MEPs vote in favour of LGBTI-specific mental health supports

At today’s plenary session of the European Parliament, MEPs voted to adopt a report containing multiple recommendations relevant to the mental health and wellbeing of LGBTI people.

ILGA-Europe are delighted to see that all the LGBTI-specific provisions were approved this afternoon. It is the first time that such inclusive language on the mental health of LGBTI people was included in a report from the Parliament. 

The report itself focuses on promoting gender equality in mental health and clinical research, and was supported by 364 MEPs. ILGA-Europe are particularly encouraged as the report not only acknowledges the particular issues that can affect the mental wellbeing of LGBTI people, but also makes explicit recommendations around providing them with tailored mental health support. 

ILGA-Europe Executive Director Evelyne Paradis reacted, saying: “Thanks to Rapporteur Beatriz Becerra Basterrechea, and the MEPs who voted in favour, we now have a detailed report that focuses on the needs of LGBTI people, in particular reflecting the lived experiences of trans and intersex people. The inclusive, intersectional language used in the Becerra report is very welcome indeed.” 

More specifically, it urges member states to prevent, ban and prosecute forced sterilisation. The Becerra report states that member states should take similar preventative action against genital mutilation affecting intersex people and provide them with mental health support. 

The text recognises that trans identities are often pathologised and highlights the distress that requiring a mental health diagnosis as part of the legal gender recognition process can cause.

The report also calls on the European Commission, member states and local authorities to develop specific policies to provide mental health services to people facing intersectional discrimination, including intersex and trans people.