15/01/2014 GREEN MEP for London Jean Lambert has signed a pledge to put equality and human rights – including those of LGBTI people – at the heart of her work in the European Parliament.
Ms Lambert signed the ‘Come Out’ pledge, which has been organised by ILGA (the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association), at a Strasbourg ceremony yesterday.
As well as promising to put equality and LGBTI rights high on the EU’s agenda if re-elected to the European Parliament later this year, Ms Lambert has agreed to take a number of specific actions, including working for the creation of a new EU Human Rights ‘watchdog’ to hold Member States accountable for any violations of LGBTI rights.
The pledge also calls for new EU Anti-Discrimination law, better protection for LGBTI asylum seekers, more investment in healthcare for LGBTI people – and to make the EU a world equality ‘champion’.
Ms Lambert, who is a member of the European Parliament’s cross-party group on LGBTI issues, said enhancing the rights of sexual minorities and promoting equality was a core value of the EU.
“The fight for the rights of all minorities – including LGBTI people – is an ongoing struggle in the world today, and the EU has a key role to play in ensuring equality and the protection of human rights for all.
“Unfortunately, there are still 76 nations in the world where homosexuality is a crime – and discrimination is all-too widespread, even in the EU. We must remain vigilant against new forms of repression again minorities: just this week, for example, the Greens are calling on the EU to condemn new anti-gay laws in some African countries.
“I am proud to work with ILGA Europe, and to have signed the ‘Come Out’ pledge, to do whatever I can to ensure that discrimination against LGBTI people in London, the EU and the wider world is seen as unacceptable and becomes a thing of the past.”