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Hungarian LGBTQ Intergroup and Global Equality Caucus host event at EuroPride urging momentum for LGBTQ rights in Central & Eastern Europe
September 15, 2023
VALLETTA, Malta -Legislators and civil society champions from Central & Eastern Europe have joined an important community discussion at EuroPride in Valletta to press for continued progress on LGBTQ rights in the region..
The event, “Strategies and Experiences in the Struggle for LGBTQ Inclusion in Central & Eastern Europe”comes as multiple governments in Central & Eastern Europe target LGBTQ people with discriminatory laws, such as Hungary and Poland, while others seek to push back against a growing tide of hatred..
In recent years, the Hungarian Government has introduced policies including restricting LGBTQ-inclusive education and denying trans people legal recognition, despite surveys suggesting a growing acceptance of the LGBTQ community among Hungarians.
With state-sponsored discrimination increasing, Pride events have also been frustrated in Poland, Georgia, and Serbia, the previous host country of EuroPride.
The panel discussion, co-hosted by the Hungarian Parliament’s LGBTQ Intergroup and the Global Equality Caucus (GEC), featured speakers from across the region, including GEC Steering Committee member Maja Moraçanin MP (North Macedonia), Intergroup chair Dávid Bedő MP (Hungary) and Tomas Vytautas Raskevičius MP (Lithuania).
The event aimed to foster a dialogue between lawmakers and civil society, examining the unique challenges faced by the region, showcasing examples of progressive change despite adversities. It highlighted how legal reforms and grassroots activism have been instrumental in driving forward an inclusive agenda, even in unlikely circumstances.
Following a presentation by Intergroup coordinator Noel Simon, which reviewed the challenging situation in Hungary, the speakers sought to strike an optimistic note by highlighting examples of progress in the region, including an anti-discrimination law in North Macedonia, the legalisation of same-sex marriage in Estonia, the pending EU legal challenge to the Hungarian Government, the advancing civil unions bill in Lithuania, and initiatives to advance LGBTQ rights in Ukraine despite the most testing of circumstances.
Concluding with an audience Q&A session, attendees agreed that there are reasons to be assured that the situation for LGBTQ people in the region will improve, so long as lawmakers and activists continue to work together to sustain momentum.
About For a Diverse Hungary:
“For a Diverse Hungary” is a parliamentary intergroup specifically dedicated to Hungarian LGBTQ people and human rights.
The group was formed on 11 October 2022, as a result of a nearly year-long process with civil sphere actors. Its main goal is to raise awareness of the LGBTQ community in the Hungarian Parliament and to advocate for their fundamental rights.
About the Global Equality Caucus:
The Global Equality Caucus is an international network of over 450 parliamentarians and elected representatives from every world region, dedicated to tackling discrimination against LGBT+ people. GEC runs campaigns, conducts research and connects its members across borders to mobilise in support of legislative change. Membership is open to legislators worldwide, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or sex characteristics.
Noel SIMON (For a Diverse Hungary) – [email protected]
Aron LE FEVRE (Global Equality Caucus) – [email protected]
[Social Media Links]
For a Diverse Hungary – FB: @diversehungary / Insta: @sokszinumagyarorszagert
Global Equality Caucus – FB: @EqualityCaucus / Insta: @equality_caucus / X: @equality_caucus