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    • Homofobia still a threat in Serbia

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    • Date: 17 May 2011
      Sexual minorities face many prejudices and discrimination. Sexual orientation is an issue that stays locked in the closet, off sight of employers and the environment, all in order to prevent one's safety. That the situation in Serbia has not changed even over the course of last year is shown in the Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) annual report, presented in the Belgrade City Hall on May 17, 2011.

      According to the report, the positive is that there are timely and decisive police responses to threats to the security of members of sexual minorities and that their right to assembly has been respected. However, the main objection in this year's report does not apply to the work of police, but to case law in the field of gender violence and discrimination. The general conclusion is that in the field of justice progress has been made, but that this change is not enough, since it still maintains the practice of slow processing and inadequate mild sanctions for crimes based on sexual orientation.

      The most important event in 2010, as the report points out, was the Pride Parade in Belgrade. According to participants, the appearance of representatives of state institutions, political parties, and NGOs in this event testifies to the growing public support for the achievement of equal status of LGBT people. However, as noted, full support will be given only by introducing a systematic approach to this problem and the introduction of more efficient judicial practice. Although the legislation was described as adequate, the participants stressed the need to institute "hate crime", already existing in comparative law of many European countries.

      The report can be found by following the link http://www.gsa.org.rs/izvestaji/GSA-izvestaj-2010.pdf .

      Nevena Manojlovic, intern in the Belgrade Centre for Security Policy

      Related topics:homophobia, Serbia, gay, rights, GSA
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