“Equal treatment campaign” 2004 03 – 2005 03

Period: March 2004 – March 2005

The aim of the project was to foster the implementation of equal treatment legislation in Lithuania by raising popular awareness and acceptance of equality and combating sexual orientation discrimination. The target groups (public authorities, people vulnerable to discrimination (lesbian women and gay men), NGOs, employers and trade unions) were provided with comprehensive interpretation of EU anti-discrimination legislation and the benefits of national provisions that go further in providing protection against sexual orientation discrimination than required by the directive. The information campaign included 3 seminars and press conferences, production of good practice guidebook with recommendations for relevant decision makers, a leaflet for victims of discrimination with help and support information, dissemination of the project outputs on the website, at the seminars, in the libraries.

The overall broader objective, to which the project contributed, was raising public awareness in Lithuania about the importance of combating sexual orientation discrimination and the means available to victims to protect themselves from unfair treatment and to seek redress under the new Law on Equal Opportunities. The publicity campaign and events of the project publicised the features of the steps being taken to stamp out such discrimination in Lithuania and the EU.

A central aim of the project was to inform public authorities, people vulnerable to discrimination, NGOs, employers and trade unions about the strategy for tackling discrimination and the various kinds of action being taken by governments around the EU.

Specific aims were:

•to strengthen the protection and guarantees afforded by the Law on Equal Opportunities, Labour Code and other national legislation as well as European law (Directive on Equality in Employment) ;

• to promote a uniform interpretation of EU anti-discrimination legislation by equal treatment bodies and to explore the benefits of national provisions that go further in providing protection against discrimination than required by the directives;

• to educate people vulnerable to discrimination (lesbian women and gay men) by providing information about equal treatment and explaining legislation (how equal treatment works in practice and what you can do if you are the victim of unequal treatment).

For more information, check www.gay.lt/lygus

Publication of the project