LGBTIQ freedom in the EU



Equality and non-discrimination are core EU values and fundamental rights, enshrined in the Treaties and in the Charter of Fundamental Rights. However, research by the EU's Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) shows that discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, non-binary, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) people persists across the EU.

The Commission presented the 'LGBTIQ Equality Strategy 2020-2025' on 12 November 2020. This was the first ever full EU strategy in this area and is intended to build on the lessons learned from the European Commission's previous actions to advance LGBTI equality from 2015-2019.

In recent years, social acceptance of LGBTIQ people has declined in some Member States. Gaps remain in the EU's legislative framework for combating discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity and sex characteristics. Combating discrimination has become part of EU internal and external policies, and is the subject of numerous resolutions of the European Parliament. In response to the backsliding of LGBTIQ rights in some EU countries, notably Poland and Hungary, MEPs declared the EU an “LGBTIQ Freedom Zone”.

In 2021 Parliament “condemned in the strongest possible terms” the anti-LGBTIQ legislation and denounced the dismantling of democracy and the rule of law in Hungary. In a resolution MEPs described the Hungarian law as being in clear breach of fundamental rights enshrined in the EU Charter of fundamental rights, the Treaties and EU internal market legislation.

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