Sunday 17 October 2021

LGBTI organisations say next government must enshrine rights in coalition deal

A rainbow flag flying against a cloudy blue sky

Gender equality organisations will be urging the future coalition parties to include LGBTI rights in the government accord at a symposium being held in Assen on Monday.

‘We are counting on the next government to honour the promises on LGBTI rights which have been set down in our Rainbow Accord, even though one of the negotiating partners [ChristenUnie] did not sign it,’ said Astrid Oostbrug, chairwoman of gay and transgender rights group COC, ahead of the meeting on International Coming Out Day.

The Rainbow Accord, which was signed by 10 political parties in March, sets out measures to counteract violence against the LGBTI community and intersectional discrimination. It also includes ways of promoting acceptance of LGBTI people in schools and enabling children to have multiple parents.

The Netherlands is currently ‘lagging behind in 12th place’ in Europe when it comes to equal rights, inclusion and acceptance, regardless of sex, gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation, Oostbrug said.

The 10 parties have also promised to anchor LGBTI rights in the constitution, for instance to have an X on the passport instead of an M or F and to ban therapies claiming to ‘cure’ LGBTI people.

However, in May the caretaker government said that while it would support a code of conduct on LGBTI issues for religious communities, where so-called conversion therapies are carried out, it would be too complicated to enshrine such a ban in law.

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