When governments demonize LGBT rights: How does it affect children?

In recent months, the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people have come under serious threat in multiple countries as populist and authoritarian governments have passed brutal laws aimed at restricting these rights.

Limitation of LGBT rights in world politics: how laws under the pretext of protecting children threaten fundamental freedoms

Countries such as Uganda, Ghana, Iraq, Russia, Hungary and the United States have made attempts to restrict the fundamental freedoms of LGBT people, including freedom of expression, association and assembly. They have justified these actions by arguing that the presence of LGBT people in the public sphere poses a threat to children, misusing child protection rhetoric to suppress fundamental human rights.

This outdated and offensive stereotype harms LGBT people by demonizing them in the public consciousness and denying them basic rights. It also harms all children, who are deliberately kept in the dark about important topics such as family diversity, current events, and comprehensive sexuality education. However, most of all, these laws harm LGBT children by making them feel isolated and without examples of how they can blossom in the future.

Numerous laws supposedly aimed at protecting children turn out to be extremely cruel in reality. In 2023, Uganda passed an anti-homosexuality bill under the guise of “protecting children and youth.” However, this law does nothing to address the real problems of Ugandan children, such as high levels of poverty, child labor and limited access to education and healthcare. Instead, he uses this excuse to invade the privacy of LGBT adults.

This included punishing same-sex relationships between adults with life imprisonment, introducing the death penalty for “aggravated homosexuality”, and criminalizing LGBT propaganda, punishable by up to 20 years in prison.

The bill passed by the Ghanaian Parliament also claims to “provide protection and support for children” but contains extremely repressive measures. The bill would criminalize LGBT rights campaigns that allegedly target children, with penalties of up to 10 years in prison. It also goes much further, banning the creation and support of LGBT organizations and, in particularly violent cases, punishing the simple fact of identifying as LGBT.

Russia, which many years ago banned any positive or neutral depiction of LGBT people for children, later extended this ban to all public life, effectively banning any recognition of LGBT people and their rights. These laws have been used to intimidate, harass, and punish LGBT people and organizations, encouraging discrimination. They have also denied LGBT children access to educational and health services, harming their mental health and well-being. The situation worsened in 2024 when the Russian Supreme Court declared LGBT activism “extremist,” imposing prison sentences and other penalties for belonging to an LGBT organization.

Other countries have followed a similar path. Hungary has stepped up efforts to limit LGBT portrayals in the media, passing a law banning LGBT depictions in educational materials and television programs aimed at youth. In 2024, absurd new rules were introduced regulating where and how toys such as rainbow blocks could be sold.

Legislative Barriers: The Impact of Anti-LGBT Laws on Mental Health and Children’s Rights in the United States

In the United States, lawmakers also argue that they are protecting children by passing laws that make life more difficult for children. Like Russia or Hungary, seven states impose restrictions or outright bans on discussion of sexual orientation and gender identity in school curricula, and four more limit whether and how same-sex relationships can be discussed in school textbooks. These laws, justified as protection for children, limit youth’s access to information about different sexual orientations and gender identities, ignoring the possible negative consequences of isolation and invisibility for young people who identify or will identify as LGBT.

Many other laws are passed under the guise of protecting cisgender, heterosexual youth, but they unfairly target and stigmatize transgender children. These laws deny transgender children access to sports, prohibit them from participating in related educational institutions, and notify their family members of their status. Nearly half of U.S. states prohibit transgender children from receiving health care that confirms their gender identity, a vital aid for reducing gender dysphoria and improving comfort in their own bodies. These bans are aimed solely at children, who may change their views in the future, without paying enough attention to those children and adults for whom access to this help is critical and whose life path becomes much more difficult and painful without it.

Thousands of LGBT youth and their families are testifying directly to legislators about the immediate and obvious harm these bills cause. These claims are supported by data: a 2023 Trevor Project survey found that 71 percent of LGBT youth surveyed and 86 percent of transgender and non-binary youth surveyed reported that laws restricting their rights had a negative impact on their mental health. Despite children’s clear messages of injustice and stigma, legislators continue to ignore their voices.

What would laws and policies look like if we truly considered the needs of all children, including LGBT children? These needs include security, privacy, access to healthcare, education and a sense of belonging. If governments prioritize these aspects, laws would aim to create an inclusive environment where every child could feel protected and respected, without fear of discrimination or stigmatization.

One of the fundamental principles of international human rights law is to look out for the best interests of the child—not only those who conform to traditional gender and sexual expectations, but also LGBT children. Viewed in this broad context, many recent laws and policies can be characterized as either insufficient or outright discriminatory.

LGBT children have the right to the same opportunities and protections as their peers who conform to traditional gender and sexuality norms. Governments must ensure their well-being by developing inclusive educational programs, providing adequate resources and support, and ensuring access to high-quality health services. Support and acceptance of LGBT children helps overcome discriminatory barriers and helps create a society in which all children receive care tailored to their individual needs.

Wisbech hosts first Pride with drag shows and workshops

Organizers of the city’s first Pride event say it will create a place for community LGBTQ+, and we all need community.” The event is scheduled to take place in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, on Saturday and will include performances by drag artists, musicians, as well as various stalls, workshops, and circus performances.

Fenland Pride will become an annual event for the LGBTQ+ community

Organizer Pip Gardener said the enthusiasm of the participants made the event “really great, fun and exciting”.

They said they hoped Fenland Pride, which will take place at the Queen Mary Centre, will become an annual event. “I think there is a misunderstanding about the essence of Pride. It creates a space for community, and we all need community ” the organizer said.

“Even if you don’t fully understand what identity is, you still understand how important connections are, making friends, having fun and celebrating. This is especially important when many other places do not allow this to be done consistently.”

The event is hosted by the Kite Trust, an organization supporting the wellbeing and creativity of young LGBTQ+ individuals in Cambridgeshire, Peterborough, and nearby regions, which has received annual funding. The event will coincide with an art exhibition at the Wisbech and Fenland Museum, showcasing works by LGBTQ+ youth aged 13 to 30 from the entire region.

Among the exhibitors is Nia L., whose work was inspired by her own awareness of her intersex identity.

“As a child, I always felt like a stranger, as my body changed unexpectedly for me. I want to show people who find themselves in a similar situation that they are not alone, and that many of us go through this,” Nia shared.

The artist, who has occasionally experienced feelings of “deep loneliness,”noted the importance of Pride and said: “I was amazed by the openness of this event, I did not expect this, and it is really wonderful to see.”

Pip Gardener added: “Cambridgeshire has a huge LGBTQ+ community. Please contact the Kite Trust, and we will assist you in connecting with them. But also understand they reside close to you, and they’re individuals like you seeking friendship and connections.

Why Pride is essential: support, safety and economic impact for LGBTQ+ groups

Pride events play a vital role for the LGBTQ+ community, providing a platform for expression, support and unity. These events serve not only as a celebration of identity, but also as an important tool for the fight for equality and rights.

First,  Pride offers a secure environment for individuals to openly express their identities without concern for judgment or discrimination.This is especially important in societies where LGBTQ+ people often face bias and violence. Pride provides an opportunity to feel accepted and understood, which helps build self-confidence and reduce stress levels.

Secondly, Pride events play a key role in raising awareness of the challenges encountered by the LGBTQ+ community. Public marches and rallies attract attention from the media and the general public, which helps convey important messages about equality, human rights and the need for social justice. It also contributes to changing  public sentiment and governmental policies to protect the rights of LGBTQ+ people.

Additionally, Pride creates unique opportunities to build and strengthen communities. Interacting with others who share similar experiences and challenges helps build strong bonds and support each other. This is especially important for young people who may feel isolated or misunderstood. Activities like these promote a sense of belonging and support.

Pride’s economic impact is also significant. These gatherings draw tourists and bolster local economies. Shops, restaurants and hotels receive additional income, and cities and regions gain a positive reputation as welcoming and inclusive places.

In conclusion, Pride events are an integral part of the life of the LGBTQ+ community, contributing to its strengthening and development. They create a space for expression, struggle for rights and the formation of supportive bonds, which makes them important not only for the participants themselves, but also for society as a whole.

Protest at Pride in Budapest: citizens oppose Orban’s policies towards LGBTQ+ people

Thousands of Hungarian citizens gathered at the annual parade in Budapest on Saturday, expressing their support for the LGBTQ+ community and vowing to continue speaking out against government policies. Information about this came from Reuters.

March for equal rights: an LGBTQ+ voice in Hungary

In the context of contemporary political changes in Hungary, the government of Viktor Orbán has introduced a series of legislative amendments limiting the rights of LGBTQ+ citizens. These measures have been the subject of intense debate both domestically and internationally, highlighting the importance of international support and the active participation of human rights defenders.

“It’s very meaningful to be here to show that we exist and our existence matters,” 30-year-old Anna Reti, a participant in the march in the capital, shared her thoughts. She noted that many members of the LGBTQ+ community in Hungary  encounter discrimination and unfriendliness in their daily lives

” For instance, she mentioned, “Just recently, I stepped out adorned in rainbow accessories, and it was hard not to notice people staring at me.”

Hungary does not recognize same-sex marriage and only  heterosexual couples have the legal right to adopt children.

Orbán’s administration revised the constitution to define marriage as solely between a man and a woman and restricted adoption rights for gay couples. His administration has asserted that the 2021 legislation aims to safeguard children and does not specifically aim at the LGBTQ+ community. Nonetheless, it has sparked worry among homosexual, bisexual, and transgender individuals in Hungary.

Last year, multiple bookshops faced fines for selling books depicting homosexuality without the required plastic wrapping, as stipulated by law.

In November, the museum’s director was fired after the institution allowed visitors under 18 to view a World Press Photo exhibit that contained LGBTQ+ content.

Before Saturday’s march, the embassies of the United States, Germany, and 33 other nations called on Hungary to safeguard LGBTQ+ rights and revoke laws that discriminate against individuals in this community. David Pressman, the US ambassador, was one of several diplomats who attended the Pride event. “This is a delightful nation with a deep historical legacy of individuals who stand up and fight for liberty. The participants in today’s march embody the best traditions of our country,” he told reporters.

Let us recall that the embassies of more than thirty countries, including Ukraine, in Hungary made a collective declaration preceding the 29th Budapest Pride, affirming solidarity with the LGBTQ+ community and denouncing its oppression in the region.

Laws and discrimination: how countries around the world ensure LGBTQ+ rights

A study of legislation on the rights of the LGBTQ+ community around the world shows significant differences in legal approaches and levels of protection. In certain nations, prejudice based on sexual orientation and gender identity persists and is legally sanctioned.

For instance, Russia has legislation prohibiting the “promotion of non-traditional sexual relationships among minors”, which is often used to restrict the rights of the LGBTQ+ community to freedom of expression and gathering.

In Hungary, Orbán’s government changed the constitution to define marriage exclusively as between a man and a woman, and restricts adoption rights for same-sex couples, sparking serious concerns and protests from LGBTQ+ activists and human rights defenders.

In other Eastern European countries, such as Poland, laws also aim to restrict the rights of LGBTQ+ citizens, including prohibitions on “gay pride marches” ” and other events aimed at strengthening civil society and solidarity.

The Middle East and some African countries have laws that criminalize same-sex relationships, leading to systemic discrimination and violence against LGBTQ+ people.

Many Asian countries have laws and customs that set rigid norms on gender identity and limit the rights of transgender people.

Despite global efforts and international pressure to change legislation to protect the rights of the LGBTQ+ community, issues of discrimination and inequality continue to persist in various parts of the world.

Safeguarding the Rights of LGBT+ Students in sports: equal opportunities for everyone

Safeguarding the Rights of LGBT+ Students in sports is an important and relevant topic in modern society. In recent years, many efforts have been made to guarantee equal opportunities for all students, irrespective of their gender identity or sexual orientation. However, despite these efforts, LGBT+ students continue to face discrimination and barriers in the sporting sector.

Inclusion in sports: rights and protection of LGBT+ students

One of the key aspects of safeguarding the Rights of LGBT+ Students in sport is ensuring their right to compete on an equal basis with other students. Certain countries and states have enacted laws that prevent transgender students from joining sports teams that align with their gender identity. These laws  have sparked considerable controversy and criticism from human rights activists, who argue that such measures are discriminatory and infringe upon basic human rights. An example of a progressive approach to solving this problem is the policy put forward by the Biden administration in the United States. The new rule, set to take effect in August 2024, aims to expand the civil rights of LGBT+ students under  Title IX, which bans sex discrimination in educational institutions.The rule includes broadening the definition of sexual harassment nd providing additional protections for victims, as well as  safeguarding the Rights of LGBT+ Students to participate in sporting events on an equal basis with other students.

But the new rule faces substantial legal hurdles from more than 20 Republican-controlled states. They have filed at least seven lawsuits against the new policy, arguing that it undermines the existing opportunities for women and girls created by Title IX over the past 50 years. Attorneys general in those states argue that the new rule creates opportunities for transgender girls to participate in girls’ sports teams, which they say is unfair.

Despite these legal battles, safeguarding the Rights of LGBT+ Students in sport remains a priority for human rights activists and progressive politicians. They insist that each student, regardless of gender identity, should be able to participate in sporting activities without fear of discrimination or bias. This not only promotes an inclusive and equitable environment, but also helps LGBT+ students feel accepted and supported in their educational institutions.

Breaking Barriers: The Contribution of LGBT+ Athletes to Modern Sport

In the world of sports, there are many famous athletes who have openly declared their belonging to the LGBT+ community.  Their bravery and resolve not only aids in breaking stereotypes, but also opens doors for future generations.

One of the most famous LGBT+ athletes is Billie Jean King, a legendary tennis player who came out as gay in 1981. King, winner of 39 Grand Slam titles, is a symbol of the fight for equality in sport. She actively promoted the rights of women and LGBT+ communities, founding the Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) and the National Women’s Soccer League (NWFL).

Another outstanding athlete is Greg Louganis, a four-time Olympic champion in diving. In 1995, he publicly announced his homosexuality and HIV diagnosis, which caused great resonance in the sports community. Louganis continues to actively fight for the rights of LGBT+ people, speaking at various forums and conferences.

Megan Rapinoe, captain of the US women’s soccer team, has also come out as gay. She is one of the most influential figures in modern sports, not only for her athletic achievements, but also for her active stance in the fight for equality. Rapinoe actively advocates for the rights of women and LGBT+ people, as well as against racial discrimination.

Another notable athlete is Gus Kenworthy, an Olympic freestyle skier who came out as gay in 2015. His recognition has inspired many young athletes to accept their identity. Kenworthy continues to be active in LGBT+ events and promotes inclusivity in sport.

These athletes, and many others who are openly LGBT+, play an important role in breaking down barriers and stereotypes. Their courage and determination serve as an inspiration to millions of people around the world, demonstrating that sport can be inclusive and equitable for all.

Jerusalem Pride Parade to Advocate for Hostage Liberation and LGBTQ Rights

This year’s Jerusalem Pride and Tolerance March will be held under the theme “Born to Be Free” and will combine a call for the release of 132 hostages held by Hamas and other terrorist groups in the Gaza Strip with a traditional rally in support of LGBTQ rights.

Jerusalem Open Day: Fighting for Liberation and Supporting the Pride March

The event is being coordinated in partnership with the Forum for Hostages and Missing Persons, the primary organization advocating for the interests of captive families.

The organizers said in a statement that the overall motto expresses core principles such as fighting for the release of hostages, as well as supporting the Pride and Tolerance March, calling for freedom and safety for all.

“The Jerusalem Open Day brought the October 7 victims to the forefront of their protest this year, and I am touched by their support for our fight”Tom Barkai, leader of the Jerusalem division of the Hostage and Missing Families Forum, expressed in a statement.”

The closing gathering in the park will see the participation of families and relatives of the hostages, as well as representatives from families of the deceased and communities forced to leave their homes due to the war.

The event will include performances by artists “who will provide hope and comfort, even during these challenging times.”

“This year, we have a moral duty to support the families of the hostages. It is fundamental to our commitment to advocate for our rights, liberty, security and freedom,” said Jerusalem Open Day head Nillie Maderer. “Judging by the pain of recent months, we see a double value in the march – we demand complete freedom and equality in Israel, for all who cannot live a free, fulfilling life.”

Jerusalem Pride March: Uniting in the fight for rights and liberation

Among the marchers will be the fan club of the Hapoel Jerusalem soccer team, which will advocate for the release of Hersh Goldberg-Polin, a dedicated fan of the team, the statement said. In contrast to the light-hearted fun of Tel Aviv’s LGBTQ parade, unlike the closely monitored march in Jerusalem, is typically viewed as a celebration of Pride and also serves as a form of protest against intolerant religious fundamentalist factions in a city known for its strong religious presence, where there are efforts to restrict LGBTQ rights. 

Jonathan Walker stated, “The alliance with the Hostage and Missing Families Forum is organic and vital, as they advocate for principles we have upheld for more than twenty years – the sanctity of life, human rights, and the freedom of every individual.”The Chairman of Jerusalem Day opens doors.

Since the start of the war, which began on October 7 and was initiated by Hamas in southern Israel, many public events have taken on a more subdued atmosphere due to the war and the ongoing hostage crisis. An estimated 128 hostages captured by Hamas on October 7 remain in Gaza – not all of them alive – after 105 civilians were released from Hamas captivity during a week-long ceasefire in late November and four hostages were previously released. Three hostages were successfully rescued by the military, and the bodies of 12 hostages were recovered, among whom three were inadvertently killed by the military.

Israeli forces have confirmed the deaths of 36 people still in Hamas captivity, citing new intelligence and information received from forces operating in the Gaza Strip. Since 2014, Hamas has also held the bodies of fallen IDF soldiers Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin, and two Israeli civilians Averu Mengistu and Hisham al-Sayed.

The latter two are believed to remain alive after entering the Gaza Strip of their own accord in 2014 and 2015 respectively.

The LGBTQ+ community expresses fundamental principles such as advocating for the release of hostages and supporting the Pride and Tolerance March, calling for freedom and safety for all. These ideals are central to the efforts of LGBTQ+ activists worldwide, seeking equal rights and protection from discrimination. Pride marches serve as a platform to support the LGBTQ+ community and show solidarity with its members. They call for respect for diversity and inclusivity in society, where everyone can feel respected and accepted. These events also seek to increase awareness of significant challenges confronting the LGBTQ+ community and to promote legal and social reforms necessary to guarantee equal rights and safeguard against violence and discrimination.

Vibrant events of the LGBT+ community in Paris: from festivals to parades

Throughout the year, the voice of the LGBT community is heard in cinema, sports, literature, music and the visual arts.

Paris LGBT+ culture calendar: events, festivals and films all year round

In January, the Festival of LGBT Cultures begins, a multidisciplinary event with exhibitions, screenings, film screenings and concerts throughout Paris.

In March and April, cinema celebrates the LGBT community with the International Women’s Film Festival and the Gay Film Festival. March also marks Queer Week, with a varied program including debates, treks, parties and performances at various venues throughout the Ile-de-France. This is followed by the Printemps des assoces fair, which includes exhibitions, master classes and other events.

In June, a few days before the Marche des Fiertés LGBT (gay pride parade), TIP (Tournoi International de Paris) is held, which brings together athletes from all over the world for an event open to everyone, regardless of gender, age and skill level. Also at the beginning of the month, Disneyland Paris blooms with all the colors of the rainbow as part of Magical Pride.

As fall arrives, it’s time for Jerk Off, an interdisciplinary event celebrating queer and alternative culture. Visitors flock to enjoy a variety of performances: plays, dance shows, lectures… there is something for everyone

In October, the spotlight turns to transgender people and their supporters with the Existrans parade.

November Dedicated to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender culture. At the end of the year, no less than three significant cinematic events will take place: Chéri-Chéris and the Paris International Lesbian and Feminist Film Festival. Film buffs will be spoiled for choice! Also don’t miss the Gay Salon du Livre, which focuses on literature by gay authors and provides a unique opportunity to meet famous writers.

And throughout the year you can propose marriage at the first and only LGBTQ+ agency in Paris – Gay Proposal in Paris.

A fabulous gay proposal in the heart of Paris

The first and only marriage proposal agency for gays, lesbians and transgender people in Paris
Gay Proposal in Paris is a specialized proposal agency serving the LGBTQ+ community in Paris. It stands out for its unique combination of chic, luxury, French craftsmanship and above all, offering a warm, authentic and inclusive experience for this wonderful community.
Proposals are a deeply personal and moving experience, and Gay Proposal in Paris begins by getting to know each couple to then create the most sophisticated and memorable event possible.
Florian Perrault, founder of Gay Proposal in Paris, has extensive experience in the world of luxury. He has worked as a manager at prestigious hotels such as The Ritz and has designed and produced events for luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton. With his attention to detail and passion for creating beautiful and meaningful events, he provides the LGBTQ+ community with the specialized and luxurious service they deserve.
The agency offers a variety of packages, but their common feature is an individual approach to each order, taking into account the personal preferences and tastes of each happy couple. The team is ready to adapt and cater to any request, be it an outdoor atmosphere, a Rolls-Royce rental or a visit to a Parisian cabaret. The agency team cooperates with luxury hotels and restaurants, allowing them to effectively plan events during their guests’ stay in the capital. There is also a reliable network of high-quality suppliers who can help create special and unique moments even in the shortest possible time. Many clients prefer to plan their proposals in advance, but the agency also specializes in “spontaneous” proposals and is ready to adapt to any requirements.The key to every custom event is a personalized offer.

Mass protests against transgender bigotry in 50 cities in France and Belgium

Thousands of people gathered in Paris along with several other cities across France along with as in Belgium, in major demonstrations, showing their solidarity for the transgender community and protesting against all forms of transphobia. These impressive actions highlight public unity in the fight for transgender rights and against discrimination.

Rallies like these highlight the importance of solidarity and support in the fight for the rights and acceptance of transgender people. The rallying of thousands of people in various cities shows a growing recognition of the need to protect and respect the rights of transgender people, as well as awareness of the issues of transphobia. It also highlights how the international community can come together to support vulnerable groups and strive for a fairer and more equitable society.

Large-scale rallies in defense of transgender rights were held in France and Europe

According to information from the French Ministry of the Interior, around 10,880 participants involved in demonstrations took place across the country on Sunday. A particularly substantial gathering drew roughly 2,500 attendees at Place de la République in Paris. Participants actively chanted slogans in support of transgender people and expressed solidarity with transgender communities around the world. One of the organizers, speaking to France 24, emphasized the importance of the event: “This is our reality every day. It is critically important now to protect the rights of all people, especially as rightist and extremist right-wing forces attack transgender rights and spread misinformation about children’s trans identities.”

Other protesters expressed similar sentiments of anti-patriarchal and anti-capitalist sentiments activism in cities such as Lyon, Marseille, Montpellier, as well as Brussels, Liege and several other localities.

Revolution Permanente pointed out that the French far-right’s tactics are similar to those in the US and UK, accusing conservative parties of unjustifiably attacking transgender children. In its statement, the publication stressed: “In response to these attacks, whose catastrophic consequences are already visible in the United States, Britain and Russia, it is necessary to form a broad coalition and integrate the protection of transgender rights into comprehensive international responses.”

France leads US and UK on LGBTQ+ rights despite internal disputes

Although transgender rights remain controversial in France, the country ranks higher on LGBTQ+ rights than the US and UK, according to Equaldex, an equality aggregator managed by the community.The Equality Index places France in the 20th position for LGBTQ+ rights, while the US and UK rank 27th and 28th respectively.

In France, support for trans and non-binary individuals remains strong. An Ipsos 2023 study found that 7.7% of French people support the fight against discrimination against transgender people. The practice of conversion therapy is prohibited in the country, a practice that the UK has yet to legislate, despite lengthy debate. However, France still faces the need to strengthen protections for transgender rights, while non-binary individuals still do not have full recognition and various forms of discrimination still exist. In March, the Minister of Justice, Eric Dupont-Moretti formally apologized for the country’s past treatment of the LGBTQ+ community, which he said had faced “completely unfair repression.”

Brussels and Washington condemn legal changes against LGBT people in Iraq

The US State Department noted that the recently approved legislation by the Iraqi parliament that makes something a criminal offense  same-sex relationships represents a significant challenge to human rights and freedoms. He also stressed that the law could weaken Iraq’s attractiveness to foreign investors.

International concern: criticism of the new LGBT law in Iraq by the European Union and the United States

The European Union and the United States have expressed deep concern over a recently enacted legislation by the Iraqi parliament that bans same-sex relationships. The document was approved by the majority of Iraqi deputies, who justified its need for the “protection of religious values.” This   decision sparked intense debate and raised a wave of criticism both from the international community and within the country.

In their statements, the European Union and the United States emphasized that such a law contradicts  global human rights standards and individual freedoms. They noted that it poses a serious threat to the basic principles of tolerance, equality and non-discrimination, which must be protected in every society.

Despite this, Iraqi authorities support the law, considering it necessary to maintain traditional values and religious harmony in the country. However, in light of the strong reaction from the international community, the future of this law and its impact on Iraqi society remains the subject of intense discussion and debate.

Under the new law, same-sex relations carry imprisonment terms varying between 10 and 15 years as well as a minimum seven-year sentence for “homosexual propaganda” or prostitution.

The US State Department warned that the law could discourage foreign investors, such as “global enterprises have already emphasized that such  discrimination may have adverse effects on business and economic development.”

The fight for LGBT rights: criminalization of same-sex relationships and challenges in the international arena

According to information from the non-profit project Our World in Data, same-sex sexual relations are illegal in more than more than 60 nations globally.

The prohibition of consensual same-sex sexual activity continues to be an issue in numerous countries across the globe, prompting apprehension from the global community and human rights groups.  Despite widespread recognition of LGBT rights and promotion of equality in some regions, there are a significant number of states where such relationships remain taboo and criminalized.

This has serious consequences not only for LGBT communities themselves, but also for society as a whole. The criminalization of same-sex relationships leads to systematic breaches of human rights and liberties, as well as an increase in the level of stigma and discrimination. Moreover, it prevents the development of an open and inclusive society where everyone can be accepted and respected irrespective of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

In light of international attention to human rights and equality, nations where same-sex relationships are criminalized are facing increasing pressure to change their policies and recognize LGBT rights. This causes debate and discussion both within countries and internationally.

However, the path to changing legislation and cultural attitudes varies from country to country and often requires time and effort to achieve real change. Human rights organizations and activists continue to work locally and internationally to raise awareness of this issue and promote respect and protection of the rights of the LGBT community around the world.

Open arms: 10 LGBT+ friendly places around the world

Welcome to the wonderful world of diversity and warm welcome! Now we look at 10 wonderful places around the world where LGBT+ communities can find open arms, understanding and hospitality. From cultural capitals to natural retreats, each of these destinations has its own unique spirit and hospitality, making them an excellent choice for those seeking a friendly and supportive travel environment. Let’s dive into this fascinating world and find out where open arms await everyone!

Canary Islands

The Canary Islands are well-known as one of Europe’s key LGBT+ travel spots, and with good cause. Travelers to these islands can revel in warm weather, picturesque beaches, and awe-inspiring landscapes, making it a perfect destination for a summer getaway.

These Spanish islands are celebrated for their welcoming stance toward sexuality, allowing visitors to freely enjoy LGBT+ beaches, bars, and clubs. Annually, Maspalomas in Gran Canaria hosts the Gay Pride festival, drawing in as many as 100,000 participants. This 10-day pride celebration features LGBT+ parades, pool parties, and organized boat excursions.

Berlin

Berlin is more than just a city steeped in history and artistic culture; it also stands as the vibrant hub of Germany’s LGBT+ community. The city pulsates with a lively party scene found in its bars, clubs, and carnivals scattered across the city center, notably in the Schoneberg district, renowned as the heart of Berlin’s gay culture. Berlin Pride, also known as Christopher Street Day, stands as the largest event on the city’s LGBT+ calendar, drawing in crowds to parade through the captivating streets of this magnificent European metropolis.

Zurich

Zurich is not only a major city in Switzerland, but also a place where culture, art and rich history flourish. Thanks to its open and tolerant spirit, Zurich is also renowned as one of Europe’s top LGBT+ destinations. Here you will find a variety of bars, clubs and events that reflect the diversity and fun of the city. In addition, Zurich hosts a huge LGBT+ festival, which attracts participants from all over the world and highlights the city’s pride and tolerance.

Sitges

In the Catalonia region, located southwest of Barcelona, lies the seaside town of Sitges. The most famous attraction of this small Catalan city is definitely the free beaches of the Mediterranean Sea. But don’t let the size fool you, because this beach resort’s LGBT+ nightlife is on par with its larger urban neighbors. Sitges’ vibrant nightlife offers a variety of events, including the annual Gay Pride Sitges, with a custom-built miniature village where you can sample delicious food, enjoy drinks and dance to the Spanish sunset.

Mykonos

The Greek island of Mykonos has long been considered one of Europe’s top summer destinations for LGBT+ tourists, and its appeal remains strong. Holidays on this island are a combination of relaxing hotels, picturesque beaches and rich nightlife, attracting members of the LGBT+ community from all over the world.

The XLSIOR summer festival, conducted each year on the island, is characterized by organizers as a special space where individuals connect through love and the universal language of music.   Some of the biggest names in the LGBT+ scene perform here, and many of them can be found in the beautiful outdoor spaces that Mykonos has to offer its guests.

San Francisco

The city is often referred to as San Francisco holds the title of the “Gay Capital of the World ” because of its historical importance in the fight for LGBT+ rights and activism, notably showcased in areas like the Castro District, one of the earliest gay neighborhoods in America. Make sure not to overlook the San Francisco Parade and Celebration scheduled for June 23-24 this yearwhich organizers describe as an event designed to “educate the world, celebrate our heritage, celebrate our culture, and fight for the liberation of our people.”

Barcelona

Barcelona has gained recognition as the gay capital of southern Europe due to its vibrant LGBT+ cultural festivities. In addition to a lively LGBT+ nightlife, the city is home to the annual Barcelona Gay Pride Parade, noted as the biggest pride celebration in the Mediterranean region. With more than 200,000 attendees, this event is not just a parade but also a platform for advocacy, allowing participants to dance through the night while supporting LGBT+ rights.

Toronto

Vibrant Toronto is home to the biggest gay community in Canada  . The city’s diverse gay life,  referred to locally as “The Village,” it provides visitors a wealth of art, culture and nightlife. The annual Pride celebration in June, like many other metropolitan areas, is the culmination of LGBT+ activities in Toronto, attracting approximately 1.2 million tourists annually.

Ibiza

With luxury hotels, exciting nightlife and tranquil beaches, this destination is no longer a secret, which is why so many head to this Mediterranean paradise every summer.

Numerous renowned superclubs in Ibiza organize a variety of thrilling LGBT+ events and parties throughout the year. Ibiza Gay Pride, the largest event in the LGBT+ calendar, boasts massive concerts, festivals, and marches, including a vibrant “Grand Parade.

Rio de Janeiro

Rio de Janeiro is definitely an ideal party spot suitable for nearly everyone, and the stunning views of the city and beaches make it an attractive destination for LGBT+ celebrations. It’s home to the Brazilian Gay Pride Parade, which encompasses beach parties, concerts by LGBT+ stars and draws hundreds of thousands of gay activists to the renowned Copacabana Beach will host celebrations for Brazilian LGBT+ pride.

Germany approves law on the right to gender self-determination

Members of the Bundestag have passed a law that allows gender changes theoretically every year.

Germany adopted a law on gender self-determination: what does this mean for citizens

The German parliament has passed a law promoting gender self-determination, designed to streamline the processes involved in altering names and gender identity. The Self-Determination Act garnered broad approval from the governing Traffic Light coalition, under the leadership of Olaf Scholz. but the debate surrounding it was bitter and emotional. As a result of the vote, 374 deputies spoke in favor of the law, while 251 expressed their opposition. The law will come into force on November 1.

Previously, to change gender, it was necessary to undergo an examination by two doctors (psychiatrists) “well versed in the problems of transsexualism” and obtain judicial permission. Under the new law, adults (over 18 years of age) only need to notify the authorities three months in advance and go through a simple procedure for choosing a new gender from the three provided for in German law. However, once a decision has been made, changes or cancellations are not permitted for a year.

For German citizens aged 14 to 18 years, such an application requires the approval of a parent or guardian. However, even if they refuse, the applicant has the right to apply to the family court to try to overturn this prohibition. For persons under 14 years of age, the application must be submitted by their parent or guardian on their behalf. The new law concerns only legal procedures and does not affect the rules for gender reassignment surgery.

Gender self-determination in different countries: legislation and challenges

Laws to facilitate gender reassignment procedures and their consequences may vary from country to country. Some of the countries that have passed laws or made legislative changes to facilitate gender reassignment procedures include:

Argentina. Here, in 2012, a law was passed that allows people to change their gender and name on documents without the need to undergo medical or legal procedures.

Spain. In 2007, the Equality Act was passed, which also simplified gender and name change procedures for transgender people.

Portugal. The country changed its civil status laws in 2011, allowing people to change their gender on their documents without the need for surgery or medical examination.

Canada. Various provinces in Canada have passed laws and policies to make gender and name change procedures easier for transgender people.

These are just a few examples. Gender identity policies and legislation are constantly evolving, and laws may change over time in different countries.

Apart from the countries mentioned, many others are also working to simplify gender reassignment procedures and its consequences. For example, in the US, different states have their own laws and policies on this issue. Somesome states permit changing the gender on your birth certificate without requiring surgery or court approval. However, approaches may differ significantly depending on the state.

In many countries of the European Union there are also changes in legislation aimed at making the process of gender change simpler and named. For example, Sweden, Holland, and Finland have laws that allow citizens to alter their gender on formal paperwork without the need for medical procedures or court approvals.

One of the main principles underlying these changes is the recognition of the human entitlement to one’s gender identity and self-determination. The desire for respect and recognition of personal gender identity is becoming increasingly important in modern society.

However, despite the passage of laws streamlining processes for gender reassignment challenges remain regarding social acceptance and support for transgender people. This may include combating bias, availability of medical services, and psychological assistance access, and creating inclusive educational and work environments.

Therefore, streamlining procedures for gender reassignment represents a crucial stride in acknowledging the rights of individual gender identities and fostering a more inclusive society. However, achieving this objective in its entirety necessitates additional efforts in providing social support and embracing the diversity of gender identities.