Press release: The European Parliament declared the EU an “LGBTIQ Freedom Zone”
Brussels, 11 March 2021
After the debate on the resolution tabled for plenary yesterday, the European Parliament adopted today the “Declaration of the EU as an LGBTIQ Freedom Zone”.
The step the European Parliament took today might have been a symbolic one for many, but it is a sign for civil society, activists and LGBTIQ citizens in Poland, Hungary, Romania and all across the EU that they are welcomed and loved across the Union. And yes, this declaration is a goal, not a reality. But while the rights of minorities are not made conditional by the will of majorities, in this case, proudly so, we have a majority advocating for their protection. And this is a signal to all governments which are against equality measures that the pro-LGBTIQ majority in the European Parliament will defend European values, even if national governments are not willing to.
The declaration of the Parliament today is but a starting point – from here, we wish to see local councils, regional governance bodies and national authorities making this declaration a reality. Ideally, we would see cities across the EU adopting similar declarations. But more important than that, we need them to involve their constituents in these discussions. “What will it take to make the EU an LGBTIQ Freedom Zone?” This is the question to ask. And who better to respond than national allies, civil society, anti-discrimination and equality bodies who have been following this topic for decades? So to my fellow MPs across the EU, I say: ask them and involve them in your consultations, bring their input to your colleague MPs, take the courage to propose equality legislation that is far reaching and ensure it is enforced. Only then can we truly move towards making this resolution come true.
Office of Terry Reintke MEP – Sebastian Fietkau (Sebastian.Fietkau@europarl.europa.eu)
Office of Marc Angel MEP – Lisa Kersch (Lisa.Kersch@europarl.europa.eu)