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

ILGA-Europe highlights challenges for German Presidency

On 1 January 2007, Germany will take over the Presidency of the European Union for a period of six months. ILGA-Europe published its memorandum to the EU Presidency highlighting how we see the Presidency should act to advance the issues of equality, non-discrimination and human rights in the EU.

There are numbers of significant developments and events coinciding with the German Presidency. One of the most important events is the first half of 2007, the European Year of Equal Opportunities for All, which the German presidency will oversee, and the first Equality Summit it will host in Berlin.

The Presidency will also coordinate a Berlin Declaration which will be issued next year to mark 50 years of the Treaty of Rome and further debate over the European Constitution. The German Presidency starts on a day when the Fundamental Rights Agency begins its work.

ILGA-Europe wants to see the German Presidency not only carrying on but further strengthening the EU’s commitment to equality and non-discrimination. We hope Germany will firmly put these principles right in the centre of all the events, development and debates during its Presidency.

One of the German Presidency’s announcements is a creation of an Alliance for Family in cooperation with upcoming Portuguese and Slovene Presidencies. ILGA-Europe encourages the Presidency to embrace also rainbow families to ensure all models of families are equally reflected and represented.

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

“Yesterday’s results of the Eurobarometer survey demonstrated once again that the issue of human rights and equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people still divides the European public and that is exactly why the German Presidency and the EU need to be frontline defenders of one the main European principles – equality for every person in Europe.

We look forward to work with the German Presidency. Next year promises to be exciting and interesting as the European Union celebrates the 50 anniversary of its founding treaty. This is a significant milestone and Europe should reflect its achievements and affirm its commitments to equality, human rights and non-discrimination for all people of Europe.”

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For more information please contact
Juris Lavrikovs at + 32 2 609 54 16 / + 32 496 708 375

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.

(2) Full text of our memorandum is available on our website: www.ilga-europe.org/europe/advocacy_lobbying/policy_papers/memorandum_to...

(3) Official website of the German Presidency: www.eu2007.de

(4) Results of the Eurobarometer survey are available on our website: www.ilga-europe.org/europe/news/eu_attitudes_towards_same_sex_marriage_a...