Portugal rises in European table of LGBTI rights, but at the cost of setbacks in other countries

By TPN/Lusa, in News, Europe · 29-05-2021 16:00:00 · 0 Comments

Portugal has risen to 4th place in the European table that evaluates respect for LGBTI rights, but this is due more to setbacks in other countries than structural advances in the country, argued ILGA Portugal

ILGA Europe released this year's European Rainbow Map, which reveals, for example, Portugal's rise from 7th to 4th place among 49 European countries analysed in terms of the legal and political situation of the LGBTI community.

The index "notes that in the last 12 months the advances in LGBTI rights reached an almost total deadlock, which caused countries such as Portugal, Albania and Finland to rise in the 'ranking' in a context of almost no positive change, but only due to changes considered as "non-structural" from the legislative point of view, implemented in 2021", says ILGA Portugal in a statement.

In the Portuguese case, the association for the defence of LGBTI rights says, the improvement of position in the table "was also due to the introduction of new criteria, but mainly to the clarification of the end of discrimination in blood donation by gay and bisexual men, which remained unsecured in the rules of the Directorate-General of Health".

However, stresses the organisation, this rise in 'ranking' does not translate into effective advances in Portugal, referring that the percentage of 68 percent attributed to the country in the scale of respect for the rights and equality of this community represents a difference in comparison with 2020 "almost zero", which for the president of ILGA Portugal, Ana Aresta, "reinforces the stagnation of policies" in the country, according to the quoted statement.

The responsible also reinforces the idea that the Portuguese Presidency of the Council of the European Union is, in these matters, a lost opportunity.

"In the past year, we have seen in Europe an increase in political repression against LGBTI people, coupled with a sharp rise in socio-economic hardship, and the spread of 'online' hate speech and acts on the streets across the region. In this context, [...] ILGA Portugal and ILGA-Europe reinforce: the response from governments must be more and better, with concrete actions to ensure that people are more protected, not less," the statement concludes.

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