66% of Albanian teachers stay silent when pupils are bullied because of homophobia and transphobia

Pink Embassy presented today the findings of the survey “Teachers’ perceptions and attitudes towards LGBTI adolescents in public high schools in Albania”

Tirana, 31 May 2018 – The Pink Embassy Albania presented today the results and the findings of its survey “Teachers’ perceptions and attitudes towards LGBTI persons in public high school in Albania”. The survey which took place during 2016-2017, is the first ever implemented in Albania and took place in 6 most populated regions of the country.

The survey took place as a continuation of the previous work from PINK Embassy to monitor the situation of young LGBTI adolescents attending public education in Albania. The new law on education in Albania provides equal protection from discrimination for the LGBTI adolescents, while schools and teachers are required by the law to protect their rights and report any form of violence and bullying. Until 1995 same sex relations were illegal in Albania and only in 2010 new legislation for protection from discrimination entered into force.

The findings of the Survey, based on interviews with more than 200 teachers across six major urban centers (Tirana, Durrës, Shkodër, Elbasan, Vlorë and Korçë), show some alarming attitudes and perceptions towards LGBTI adolescents.

  • 47 % of teachers declare that they have enough information toward LGBTI rights. However the same teachers when asked about bullying against LGBTI adolescents, 66 % of them stated that they stay silent when they face with it.
  • Asked if they would support their child if he /she was LGBTI, almost 70 % of Albanian teachers claimed that they would not support them. Another 70% of teachers stated that they would not even accept the sexual orientation or gender identity of their children;
  • 9.3% of teachers in Albania declare that they would not accept LGBTI persons in their classroom.

Other findings of the report also were:

  • Around 34 % of interviewed teachers say that has been witness of discrimination in their school.
  • 12% of teachers think that being LGBTI is a sickness;
  • 4% of them say that being LGBTI should be prohibited by the law;
  • 11.3% of teachers say that LGBTI people are influenced in their sexualities and identities by the internet;

Altin Hazizaj, the author of the survey, stated during the presentation: “Many teachers seem to divide intentionally the enjoyment of the children and youth rights from those of the LGBTI adolescents, who in their opinion shall not be enjoying the same rights. Despite the fact that the law supports equally every person, perceptions towards LGBTI persons influence their attitudes towards their students.”

In the presentation of the study, the PINK Embassy, recommended to Ministry of Education the preparation of a special curriculum for the information and training of teachers throughout Albania. Particular importance should also be given to the preparation of a Code of Conduct for all teachers for the protection of children and adolescents from violence, abuse, harassment, bullying and discrimination according to model of SAFE SCHOOLS”

This study is prepared by experts of Pink Embassy with the support of the American Embassy in Tirana.

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