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Jean Lambert London's Green MEP

UK MEP calls for zero tolerance on homophobic bullying in schools as Europe celebrates IDAHO

LONDON’S Green MEP Jean Lambert has called for zero tolerance on homophobic bullying in schools as Europe celebrates the International Day Against Homophobia.

IDAHO marks 23 years since the World Health Organisation removed homosexuality from its list of mental disorders.

LGBT rights have come a long way in the past few decades, with homosexuality legal in all European Union (EU) states.

However, there is still a long way to go as discrimination in daily life and law continues within the European Union and across the globe.

EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) has today published a report  detailing the results of a survey covering the EU with over 93,000 respondents, to discover the everyday issues affecting LGBT people.

This survey, which is the most extensive of its kind to date, collected comparable data on LGBT people’s experiences of hate crime and discrimination, as well as their level of awareness about their rights.

While the UK has a strong record on legislation, there is still a significant problem for young people at school: 95% of responders for the UK said they had heard homophobic insults used at school and 68% said they had hidden their sexual orientation at school at times.

There is a real need for continued action from Government and a concerted strategy in all schools to change this threatening culture.

Ms Lambert said:

Today is International Day Against Homophobia, and the release of the EU survey gives us a chance to review progress in tackling gender and sexual identity discrimination and recognise there is still much work to do in delivering equality.

“We must stand in solidarity with all LGBT people winning fights for equality across the world whilst not forgetting the continued discrimination and prejudice faced by many.

“The figures show that homophobic and transphobic violence is still at shocking levels.

“There is no excuse for members of our communities living in fear because of their sexuality or gender orientation. Governments across the EU, including our own in Britain, must take these findings seriously and ensure that LGBT people are given the full protection of the law.”