NEDF Invites to Seminar-Discussion “Human Rights in Lithuania. NGOs’ Perspective”

On the occasion of the International Human Rights Day, the members of the National Equality and Diversity Forum (NEDF) cordially invite to the seminar-discussion “Human Rights in Lithuania. NGOs’ Perspective”, which will take place on December 9th, 2015 at 2:00-4:30 PM at the premises of the Embassy of Finland (K. Kalinausko str. 24, Vilnius). In the course of the seminar-discussion the representatives of the civil society will discuss human rights issues under the present day conditions leading to the discrimination of vulnerable groups in the society.

During the event “Human Rights in Lithuania. NGOs’ Perspective” the Deputy Director of the Human Rights Monitoring Institute Natalija Bitiukova will present the results of the “Eurobarometer” survey “Discrimination in the EU 2015”. According to the residents of Lithuania, sexual orientation (57 %), age (50 %) and gender identity (46 %) are amongst the most common grounds of discrimination. Nevertheless, even 50 % of the respondents of the survey are of an opinion that it is not a necessity for LGB people to enjoy the same rights and freedoms as heterosexual people do. Hence, the question arises what effective measures should be implemented in order to promote respect and equality for every single group in the society without any exceptions.

In the meanwhile, the President of the Lithuanian Forum of the Disabled (LFD) Dovilė Juodkaitė will reveal the opportunities within the UN human rights protection mechanisms with the view of ensuring effective implementation of human rights standards in Lithuania. The Republic of Lithuania has already ratified the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities back in 2010. However, a striking gap between theory and practice in relation to the rights enshrined in the Convention is still apparent. “The issues and the needs of people with disabilities are not appreciated enough under the circumstances of the present general conditions”, says the LFD President Dovilė Juodkaitė.

The third topic within the seminar is related to the implementation of the right to legal gender recognition and the right to gender reassignment treatment on the national level. It will covered by the Policy Coordinator (Human Rights) of the National LGBT* Rights Organization LGL Tomas V. Raskevičius. The speaker will focus on compliance of national legal norms and practices with international standards in the context of the rights of transgender people. This will not only lead the way of the implementation of the decision of the European Court of Human Rights in the case of L. v. Lithuania, but will also ensure transparent, quick and accessible procedure of gender reassignment in the Republic of Lithuania.

The participants in the event will be welcomed by the Ombudsperson of the Equal Opportunities Agneta Lobačevskytė, the Counsellor of the Ambassador of Finland in Lithuania and Belarus Maria Ågren and Vytautas Magnus University Prof. Dr. Leonidas Donskis. The discussion will be moderated by the Head of the Lithuanian Centre for Human Rights Birutė Sabatauskaitė.

The National Equality and Diversity Forum (NEDF) invites everyone, interested in the field of human rights and equal opportunities, to participate in the seminar-discussion “Human Rights in Lithuania. NGOs’ Perspective“. We hope that this event dedicated to the International Human Rights Day will play a role in promoting respect and equal opportunities for every member of the Lithuania society.

You can find the further information about the event, as well as its official programme here. The seminar-discussion will be held in both Lithuanian and English languages (simultaneous translation will be provided). The event is partially funded by the Ministry of the Social Security and Labour of the Republic of the Lithuania, ILGA-Europe, EEA and Norway Grants and TGEU – Transgender Europe.