LGBTI equality and human rights in Europe and Central Asia

Gender equality momentum should be seized by European Commission

Today (Tuesday 9 June 2015) the European Parliament loudly signalled its commitment to gender equality, and more specifically to an EU strategy beyond 2015. 

MEPs adopted the initiative report prepared by Rapporteur Maria Noichl (S&D, DE) at a plenary session in Strasbourg. ILGA-Europe congratulate the rapporteur and the MEPs who have worked hard to secure a majority.

The implications of today’s vote are clear. The European Parliament has spoken in favour of a strong, ambitious gender equality strategy 2016-2020 and the European Commission must now take up the baton on this issue. Gender equality is one of the core values on which the European project was founded. The Noichl report calls for an inclusive understanding of gender, meaning that everyone across Europe should live without fear of gender based violence and discrimination.

 “Seize the moment – that is my advice for the European Commission.” said ILGA-Europe Executive Director, Evelyne Paradis. “The Commission has a fundamental responsibility to protect people against discrimination. Advancing equality has been at the heart of many good policies in the past. In 2015, the Commission has a great opportunity to show political leadership on gender equality and I would urge them to take it.”

“That fact that the Noichl report includes references to rights of LGBTI people is warmly welcomed but should not distract from the continuing absence of a Europe-wide LGBTI strategy. The adoption of a strategy, tailored to the real needs of LGBTI people in Europe, is the only way to ensure coherence and protection.” continued Evelyne Paradis.