Sixteen out of the 26 countries that have legalised same-sex marriage worldwide are situated in Europe. A further twelve European countries have legalised civil unions or other forms of more limited recognition for same-sex couples. Armenia and Estonia recognise same-sex marriages performed in any foreign jurisdiction where they are permitted.
When Veronika Sediva, a year-old consultant, visited the passport office in Prague two years ago to pick up documents for her partner and their son, she was turned away. Czech law does not officially recognize her place in the family. Should anything happen to her partner, who gave birth to their child, Sediva would have no legal right to custody, although she is also his mother.
Some may choose to stay in the closet, but many bust out and lead happy, fulfilled lives. Most, from twenty-somethings to forty-somethings, have been in the closet. I absolutely get it.
Austria is the 17th European jurisdiction to legalize gay marriage. This number counts England and Wales together and Scotland as a separate entity, since those parts of the United Kingdom passed two separate pieces of legislation on same-sex marriage. Northern Ireland, the other UK constituent state, has not legalized such marriages.
Europe has some of the most gay-friendly countries in the world with extremely progressive LGBTQ rights. However, these are largely confined to the North and West. The further East you head on the continent, the less gay-friendly it becomes.
A huge name in Bulgarian pop-folk music, or chalgaAzis was once voted the 21st greatest Bulgarian of all time. Flamboyant, openly gay and of Roma descent, Azis is also a part-time politician and in unsuccessfully ran for parliament as a member of the EuroRoma party. Fun sidenote — he is also known for pretending to have sex with men onstage.
In the Catholic countries of Eastern Europe Croatia, Poland, Slovakia, and Slovenia where religious beliefs repudiate homosexuality, gay and lesbian travelers won't find many establishments that lay out the welcome mat for them. For the most part there is a macho mentality about sexuality in all the countries covered in this guide, and it is a sensibility that is not gay-friendly but not gay-hostile either. Thus, resources for gay and lesbian travelers are few or hidden in these nations.
So, what can the Country Ranking section show me? You can use the first drop-down menu to compare the 28 current European Union member states to each other. So if you were wondering which countries are setting good standards on legal gender recognition for example, just click on that category in the drop-down list.
Read why. National LGBT work is surely very important, but International projects are a tool that many local organisations do not think about. However it could be very beneficial for LesBiGay youngsters.