Legal situation of LGBT people
Over the past decade more and more national and international organizations recognized the human rights of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender (LGBT persons). This not only legitimized the new international standards of tolerance and equality, but also encouraged to think about the discrimination that LGBT persons still suffer.
The European Union Human Rights Agency (FRA) conducted an online survey on April 2-15, 2012. Over 93.000 active lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender persons from all the European Union member countries and Croatia participated in it.
Almost half of the respondents admitted that over the past year they had personally encountered discrimination based on sexual orientation in one way or another. Europe is not homogeneous and the situation of LGBT persons differs from country to country.
It is sad, however, that Lithuania is a European leader in discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. According to the data of the FRA survey 61 % of LGBT persons in Lithuania were bullied over the past year, while the EU average is 47 %. One thing is clear: people who did not feel discriminated on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity in their home country were freer and enjoyed the benefits of living in a more diverse social environment, which in turn allowed them to interact with a wider range of social groups. So, are we going to take measures to become a leading country in tolerance instead?
Although LGBT persons are less and less hiding their sexual orientation and gender identity, the Eurobarometer survey data suggest that only 12 % of respondents in Lithuania have a gay, lesbian or bisexual friend or acquaintance, and merely 3 % a transgender one. Meanwhile, more than half (54 %) of the respondents from Catholic Spain said they regularly interact with at least one LGBT person. So, if we do not know them, how can we be sure that we do not violate their rights? The remaining 88 % also know LGBT persons, they are just not aware of it.
We believe that each citizen of Lithuania has a right to be free, not to hide their sexual orientation or gender identity, to be open and free from discrimination and bullying, and to get to know all the social groups that compose our society. You do not know LGBT persons? Read what everyone should know.
Express your faith in human freedom and the right to be yourself: sign the petition.
You think that all the citizens of Lithuania must have equal rights, freedoms and obligations? Do you hope that someday soon we will be able to celebrate the inclusion of all social groups in our country? Sign the petition against any instance of discrimination against LGBT people in Lithuania and join the team of open-minded, tolerant and respectful people.
Together, let‘s express that we do not want to live in a society where a person‘s sexual orientation or gender identity can become a pretext for discrimination and bullying. This way we will recognize that each person has the right to be himself/herself, we will encourage LGBT persons not to hide their sexual orientation and we are going to create a harmonious community.