ILGA-Europe launched the new Rainbow Map


Published on May 15 by ILGA-Europe, Rainbow Map, which ranks 49 European countries on legislative developments in the arena of LGBTI human rights, shows that while authoritarian leaders across Europe continue to use the scapegoating of LGBTI people to divide and mobilize their electorates, others are conversely showing robust political will to honor commitments to advancing and protecting the human rights of LGBTI people.

Countries are also working hard to put crime measures in place that recognize anti-LGBTI hatred as an aggravating factor. Germany, which made the largest jump in the ranking this year, prohibited hate crimes based on sexual orientation, gender identity, and sex characteristics. Other countries legislating against hate crime include Bulgaria, Iceland (which has jumped to No’2 in the ranking) and Slovenia. Bans on conversion practices, which also perpetrate violence against LGBTI people, were introduced in Belgium, Cyprus, Iceland, Norway and Portugal.

Georgia, one the most recent EU accession countries, has been cracking down on pro-EU protests against its proposed ‘foreign agents’ law, which comes directly from the Russian anti-LGBTI playbook.

For the ninth year in a row, Malta continues to occupy the number one spot on the Rainbow Map, with a score of 88%.

The three countries at the other end of the Rainbow Map scale are Russia (2%), Azerbaijan (2%), and Turkey (5%). Russia lost 7 points and dropped 3 places because of the federal legislation banning legal gender recognition and trans-specific healthcare. Previously, Armenia was at the end together with Turkey and Azerbaijan but because of Russia’s new legislative changes, they lost points and changed the place with Armenia. As a result, Armenia moved up, leaving the dictatorship trio.

Germany, Iceland, Estonia, Liechtenstein, and Greece are the countries with the biggest jumps in scores. While both Estonia and Greece amended their laws to allow same-sex couples to marry and adopt children, Greece also filled the gaps in their anti-discrimination legislation to fully protect LGBTI people. Liechtenstein extended adoption rights to same-sex couples.

In many countries, legislative processes for new LGR procedures have been stalled this year. Similarly, no country prohibited unnecessary medical interventions on intersex children.