Lithuanian LGBT* Community Demands a Change of Attitudes of Major Political Parties

Since the major political parties in Lithuania – Lithuanian Social Democratic Party (LSDP), The Homeland Union – Lithuanian Christian Democrats and the The Labour Party – are in the process of electing their new leaders, the LGBT* community in Lithuania demands a change in the management bodies of the latter parties.

The representatives of the Lithuanian LGBT* community have expressed their grave concern over the political stance of current Social Democratic leader Algirdas Butkevicius and a candidate for the Conservative leader Irena Degutienė. A member of the European Parliament Gabrielius Landsbergis is expected to bring a change of attitude towards the local LGBT* community. The Executive Director of the national LGBT* rights organization LGL Vladimir Simonko said that expectations are associated with the MEP’s “more liberal approach to LGBT* issues”.

LGBT* community is concerned over the current policy of the major Lithuanian political parties and the lack of political will to legislate upon the relationships of same-sex partners. “In Europe the Conservatives, not to mention the Social Democrats, included the LGBT* issues as one of the key issues in their agendas long ago. The Conservatives in the United Kingdom had introduced not only a same-sex partnerships, but also marriages to same-sex couples. From this perspective our conservatives seem extremely conservative. The lack of innovativeness might result in losing a part of political electorate, “- stressed Mr. Simonko.

According to the Executive Director of LGL, the Lithuanian Liberal Movement Party took the public debates about LGBT* rights and human rights in general to a different level. Mr. Simonko concluded that this did not prevent the Liberals to achieve favorable results in the municipal elections and their success signals to other parties “to reset their approach to human rights and to follow the good example.”