Press release: Lesbian issues are still often swept under the rug: International Lesbian Day should remind us of their importance

Brussels, 8 October 2020

8 October is celebrated as International Lesbian Day, a day where we must reflect on the progress and shortcomings of lesbian’s rights and whether they can fully enjoy them. The LGBTI Intergroup welcomes the celebration of this date.

Maria Walsh MEP, Vice-President of the LGBTI Intergroup in the European Parliament, comments:

I am happy there is an international day to celebrate lesbians*’ lives, experiences and their wholesome diversity. Today, we must recognise just how complex lesbian* identities can be, and on that note, how often they are misunderstood. Today is also an opportunity to reflect about all the lesbians*, especially the lesbian* youth, who are struggling with their coming out, and to reassure them that things will get better. There are thankfully more and more role models that help fight stereotypes. In so doing, they help contribute to a world where lesbians* might suffer less mental health issues, be it because of fears of coming out or because of repercussions when they do. We are fighting with the LGBTI Intergroup so that your calls are heard. 

Terry Reintke MEP, Co-Chair of the LGBTI Intergroup in the European Parliament, concludes:

Celebrating this date is also about asking ourselves whether Lesbians* across the EU and beyond can fully enjoy their rights. We will keep fighting for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights for everyone, for non-discriminatory access to Medically Assisted Procreation technologies and for the EU’s ratification of the Istanbul Convention. Lesbians* have a right to decide over their bodies and to enjoy reproductive health. Lesbians* have a right to have a family in whatever form they so wish. Lesbians* have a right to safety and to protection from domestic or gender-based violence of any form. The rights of lesbians* are no different than those of any other person – they are human rights and we will make sure this message is clear.

Press contacts:

Office of Maria Walsh MEP – Ciara Murray (

Office of Terry Reintke MEP – Sebastian Fietkau (