Tirana says YES to EQUALITY!

Albania ranks first in the Western Balkans for discrimination of LGBTI persons in vital aspects, while 94% of LGBTI people hide their sexual orientation

Tirana, May 10, 2019 - Tirana joins the capitals of Europe by organizing the 10th Diversity Festival, the 4th Primo March 2014 (Tirana Pride 2019), thus opening the week of awareness events in the framework of the International Day Against homophobia and transphobia (May 17).

This is the 10th consecutive year that PINK Embassy in Albania, Human Rights House in Albania (HRH) and CRCA Albania, thanks to the support of national and international partners, organize the Festival of Diversity, one of the most important initiatives for awareness raising society and information sharing in support of the International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia. "Tirana Pride 2019" is a day of solidarity with the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex community who, due to historical discrimination, face many difficulties in their lives.

Part of the Festival, like every year, is also the Fair of Diversity, where organizations and institutions promote their work on human rights.

On behalf of the organizers, Altin Hazizaj said: "Not without regret, still today, in 2019, Albania ranks first in the Western Balkans with regard to the discrimination of LGBTI persons on different aspects of their lives and work. About 94% of LGBTI people conceal their sexual orientation due to their public opinion. Protecting the rights of LGBTI people brings empowerment to democracy, respect for dignity and human rights, emancipation of our society. "

The figures for the LGBTI community in Albania bring a non-positive picture of the realities of human rights. According to the 2018 World Bank Report on LGBTI people in the Western Balkans, Croatia and Slovenia, Albania ranks among the first countries in the region to violate the LGBTI community rights. Discrimination is still present in the life of LGBTI community regarding access to health services, work relationships, school, and the country where they live. In Albania, about 94% of LGBTI people hide their sexual orientation because of the strong prejudice that still holds our country against LGBTI people.

The latest report by PINK Embassy "LGBTI Teens Teachers' Attitudes to Public Education" reported that around 66% of Albanian teachers were silent in homosexuality and transphobia-based schools, and 4% said that sexual orientation and the gender identity of teenagers should be prohibited by law. Asked if they would support their child if they were a LGBTI person, about 70% of Albanian teachers say they would not accept it, while 9.3% of them say they cannot accept LGBTI teenagers in class or school. "

The UNDP report, "Being LGBTI in Eastern Europe - Albania" showed that public attitudes toward LGBTI people are still largely inadequate. In Albania 92 percent of respondents stated they would not interact with LGBTI people, 48% of respondents believe that homosexuality is a disease and half of respondents believe that homosexuality is imposed by the West. Although in recent years our country has made great legal and social progress towards the acceptance of sexual and gender diversity, culturally and normatively the visibility of the LGBTI community remains low, thus becoming an obstacle to their recognition and acceptance in Albanian society.

The PINK Embassy, ​​8 years ago, first publicly asked for equality in marriage, a request addressed to the Albanian Parliament. However, prejudice, discrimination, and religious pressure in Albania have contributed to keeping the law of discrimination in marriage and coexistence! Meanwhile, just a year ago, the PINK Embassy invited an request to the Albanian Parliament and all its MPs to amend the Family Code to eliminate any existing barriers to the law that violate discrimination against the LGBTI community in marriage. Public demand was supported by 10 national organizations and networks operating in the country in the protection of human rights.

The PINK Embassy and all LGBT community supporters in Albania, with annual pride marches and flagship flagships in the centre of the capital, have begun to create an annual tradition to protect and promote the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual people , transgender and intersex (LGBTI).

To protect the dignity, equality and the rights of every citizen regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. Say no to discrimination and social exclusion!

YES to EQUALITY!

For more information, please contact: [email protected]

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