Committee on civil liberties adopts recommendation for an EU roadmap against homophobia

This morning, the European Parliament’s Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs adopted a recommendation for a future EU roadmap against homophobia and discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity.

LIBE committee meetingThe report builds on ten previous requests by the Parliament in the last three years to roll out an EU equality roadmap, or strategy, for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) persons.

EU equality strategies already exist in the field of Roma integration, discrimination on the basis of disability, and gender equality.

The non-binding report adopted in committee today calls on the European Commission to make proposals for non-discrimination in employment, education, health and access to goods and services; in the field of citizenship, families and free movement; freedom of assembly and expression; hate speech and hate crime; asylum and migration; and foreign affairs.

The proposals respect the principle of subsidiarity, whereby the European Union and Member States must stick to their respective competences.

In May, eleven Member States also expressed support for a future roadmap.

Roberta Metsola MEP, Spokeswoman for the EPP group on the report and Member of the LGBT Intergroup, commented: “The problems LGBTI people face in Europe are serious: discrimination, violence and harassment are persistent phenomena, that must be addressed.”

“The vote this morning sent a strong message and showed a broad consensus across the political spectrum to tackle these issues.”

Ulrike Lunacek MEP (Greens/EFA), author of the report and Co-President of the LGBT Intergroup, added: “This report should encourage the Commission to—at last!—present a coherent approach to protect the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people across policy areas it’s responsible for.”

“I am very pleased the Committee adopted this report with such a large cross-group majority. The report adopts a balanced approach, and I will be working with all political groups to ensure any doubts are addressed before the text goes to plenary.”

The report is expected to be voted in plenary in the first months of 2014.

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Image credit: © European Union