LGBTI equality and human rights in Europe and Central Asia

Workshop 9-16

Workshop 9: Young and different: the intersection of being an LGBTQ young person in a traditional community

IGLYO will address the multiple discrimination that often exists for young people who identify as LGBTQ in traditional cultures. Communities often employ ‘traditional values’ not only to stigmatize nonconforming sexual orientations, gender identities, or gender expressions, but also to silence young people on the basis of age. IGLYO will use nonformal education techniques to raise awareness of this particular type of multiple discrimination, with a focus on the ways that the national and international LGBTQ movements can ensure that perspectives of LGBTQ youth are represented in advocacy efforts.
Presenters: Jordan Long, IGLYO Programmes & Policy Officer; Zara Shushanyan, IGLYO board member.

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  • Jordan Long, IGLYO Programmes & Policy Officer; Zara Shushanyan, IGLYO board member

Workshop 10: Presentation of the Commissioner for Human Rights' report 'Discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity in Europe'
On 23 June 2011 the Commissioner for Human Rights, Mr Thomas Hammarberg, launched his pan European study on the socio-juridical situation of LGBT persons in Europe. The Commissioner has always stressed that his report, based on field research in all 47 member states of the Council of Europe, is a tool for dialogue with authorities, national human rights institutions and civil society in member states. This workshop will explore how this report can be used by ILGA Europe member organisations. What is needed to implement the 36 recommendations of the report? What role can ILGA Europe play in lobby and advocacy strategies? How to measure progress? A short video on the launch of the report will be shown as part of the workshop.
Presenters: Dennis van der Veur, Adviser to the Commissioner; Julia Ehrt, Co-President of Transgender Europe.

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  • Dennis van der Veur, Adviser to the Commissioner

Workshop 11: Human rights are my pride: Amnesty International's campaign for LGBT rights in Europe
The workshop will give an overview of Amnesty International's campaign for LGBT rights across Europe, particularly on support to Pride events and combating homophobic and transphobic legislation across Europe, and a special focus on Turkey on the back of Amnesty International's recently published report. Participants in the workshop are encouraged to provide their feedback on Amnesty International's work on LGBT rights, including suggestions on issues on which Amnesty International could focus to achieve more impact and added value, such as addressing homophobic and transphobic violence across Europe, an issue currently under consideration for Amnesty International's future regional work.
Presenters: Veronica Scognamiglio, Amnesty International European Institutions Office; Andrew Gardner, researcher on Turkey, Amnesty International.

Find the presentations from Amnesty International here...

  •     Overview of Amnesty International's work on LGBTI rights in Europe
  •     Future plans of Amnesty International's work on LGBTI rights in Europe

Workshop 12: Sharing good practice on LGBTI diversity (I)
This interactive 2-part workshop aims to give LGBTI communities the opportunity to exchange examples of good practice in diversity. A working definition of what constitutes good practice in diversity will guide discussions. Examples of these practices will be collected and made available to members on ILGA-Europe website space "exchange of diversity good practice" after the conference. Participants will be informed on what ILGA-Europe is doing to be fully inclusive and representative of the diverse LGBTI communities.
Facilitators: Karima Zahi, Director and Satwant Kaur, Associate Consultant, Pro Firmus.

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  •     Karima Zahi, Director and Satwant Kaur, Associate Consultant, Pro Firmus.

Workshop 13: The new EU Instruments to improve asylum decision making in relation to LGBTI claims
This workshop will consider the recent and coming developments in term of the European Common Asylum System, which include legislative improvements (Qualification, Procedure and Reception Conditions Directives) and non-legislative instruments (the European Asylum Support Office). It will also be based on “Fleeing Homophobia”, a recently published research that provides strong evidence about the existing policies as to the handling of LGBTI asylum claims.
Presenters: Sophie Attuil, consultant to Sylvie Guillaume MEP (rapporteur of the EP on the asylum Procedure Directive); Sabine Jansen, co-manager of the “Fleeing Homophobia” research project, COC Netherlands; Joël Le Déroff, ILGA-Europe.

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  •     Joël Le Déroff, ILGA-Europe

Workshop 14: The spirit of human rights: how to foster constructive dialogue between LGBT groups and tradition based faith communities
The positive attitude of several Protestant Churches has shown that being LGBT and Christian can go together without contradiction. It is also possible to overcome the traditionally negative attitudes of Catholic Churches towards LGBT people. However, the Roman Catholic Church and Orthodox Churches depend more strongly on theological arguments based on „tradition”. Therefore, to have constructive dialogue with these Churches, different strategies need to be used. Based on this notion, we propose to develop dialogues about human rights. The workshop explores existing religious resources for the recognition of human rights in these two churches, which can be regarded as common ground for such dialogues. Nevertheless, these churches lack the full spirit of human rights in their midst, moreover LGBT people are excluded from human rights in the political arena. In answer to this, the workshop presents a line of arguments for the inclusion of LGBT people into the religious human rights discourse. We will use „queer readings” of biblical texts, which speak out against physical and verbal homophobic violence. We will show that there is congruence between the message of the Gospel and the spirit of human rights.
Presenters: Dr. Michael Brinkschroeder, European Forum of LGBT Christian Groups, Germany; Joseanne Peregin, Drachma Parents Group, Malta; Dr. Karen Badalayn, We for Civil Equality, Armenia.

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  • Dr. Karen Badalayn, We for Civil Equality
  • Find the handout from the workshop here.

Workshop 15: Traditional values – an international perspective
At the UN's 1994 Conference on Population and Development in Cairo and the 1995 UN’s Beijing Conference on Women, advocates of family values clashed with advocates on sexual and reproductive health and rights. Preservation of family and the advancement of individual human rights have increasingly been addressed at international human rights forums. In 2010 Russia launched a traditional values resolution at the UN Human Rights Council, a move that was widely considered as an attempt to limit the space for i.e. LGBT human rights advocates to address their issues. This workshop will address how traditional values have come up in the international human rights system, both historically and at present.
Presenters: Joke Swiebel, former MEP and former government representative on women issues, The Netherlands; John Fisher, ARC International; Igor Kochetkov, Russian LGBT network.

Workshop 16: Sharing good practice on LGBTI diversity (II)
This is the second part of a 2-part workshop. Discussions from workshop 12 will be continued, followed by good practice presentation - an overview of LGBT community development in rural Ireland that examines the cultural and constitutional history of LGBT activism in Ireland and how that has enabled the current LGBT Diversity programme.
Presenters: Karima Zahi, Director and Satwant Kaur, Associate Consultant, Pro Firmus; Bernadette Smyth, LGBT Diversity, Ireland.