European Region of the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association

European policies needed to address widespread discrimination against young LGBT people

This week ILGA-Europe and IGLYO launch the results of a comprehensive survey on discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) young people. The Europe-wide study that looked at discrimination in different areas of life, clearly demonstrates the need for national and European actions targeting young LGBT people.

Over 700 young LGBT people from 37 countries responded to the survey and gave information about where they mostly experience discrimination. School (61% of respondents) and family environment (51%) are the places where most young people reported discrimination and exclusion. In comparison, 29,8% of young people faced discrimination in their circle of friends.

The report highlights the lack of visibility of LGBT people at school and in society and shows how bullying and harassment continue to be major problems for LGBT youths. These can affect mental well-being, lead to lower achievements at school and to higher suicide rates. Discrimination and prejudice thus influence the transition of young people into adulthood and are at the basis their social exclusion.

Björn van Roozendaal, IGLYO board member, said:

“The outcomes of this survey do not give a positive picture. Realities of over 700 young people tell us that there is a great need for change. Young people should be able to live their lives without fears, to go to school without being bullied, and to live in a society which is supportive and allows for their personal development regardless their sexual orientation or gender identity.”

Deborah Lambillotte, Co-Chair of ILGA-Europe Executive Board said:

“The European Union and national governments have a duty to make sure that all young European citizens have equal rights and opportunities. A lot more has to be done on protecting young people against homophobic violence and other forms of discrimination, both at EU and national level. Governments need to take into consideration the realities of LGBT youth in their social policies, in particular in health and education.”

For more information please contact

Evelyne Paradis, Policy Officer, ILGA-Europe

+32 2 6095413 / evelyne@ilga-europe.org

Björn van Roozendaal, IGLYO board member

+31 6 19 232257 / bjorn@iglyo.com

Notes for editors:

(1) ILGA-Europe is the European Region of the International Lesbian and Gay Association and works for equality and human rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in Europe, www.ilga-europe.org.

(2) IGLYO is the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer Youth and Student Organization and works to combat the discrimination and persecution of young lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth, www.iglyo.com.

(3) The Report in PDF format is available from ILGA-Europe website