LGBTQIA+ peoples' rights in Italy

“The year 2022 was the worst of the last ten years for the LGBTQ+ community”. This is the conclusion of the annual report by ILGA (International Lesbian and Gay Association) Europe for the Social Affairs Committee of the European Parliament. The report considered the protection of LGBTQIA+ people’s rights in 49 European countries, amongst which Italy occupies a questionable 33rd place in the ranking.

The situation in Italy is critical due to a plurality of causes, ranging from the prevailing patriarchal culture, which, as such, imposes a rigid binarism with respect to gender identity and sexual orientation; to the Christian-Catholic tradition; to the media, which now resort to an outdated and sometimes inappropriate vocabulary, influencing the spread of prejudice and misinformation. And the general lack of education, especially in schools, and politics, which often uses homobitransphobia as a propaganda tool. The ILGA report itself emphasises the worsening of discrimination, especially since the Meloni government took office.

It must also be said, in Italy, there are still no laws protecting the LGBTQIA+ community against acts of discrimination. And when an attempt was made to propose a DDL (the Zan DDL), almost everything was shattered. In fact, there is currently no specific law against homobitransphobia in our country. The only law that comes close is the ‘Mancino Law’ of 1993, which punishes crimes of discrimination on racial, ethnic or religious grounds. However, this law does not explicitly cover cases related to sexual orientation or gender identity. This consequently leads to greater difficulty in proving the homobitransphobic motive of a crime, and in obtaining comprehensive and decisive assistance.

Data from alternative national and international reports further confirm an unhappy and regressive Italian reality. Homobitransphobia is a serious problem in our country, which must be urgently addressed through the development and approval of adequate laws, taking into account the specific needs of our community, everyday and not just for World Day Against Homobitransphobia. This is the only way to develop a genuine culture of respect and inclusion, in which what is different is not disregarded and feared, but embraced and welcomed. And our current ranking of 33rd will be a distant memory.

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