European homophobia hurts refugees

MTV News: Gay Refugees Teaser from Liem Vu on Vimeo.

This video is called MTV News correspondent Liem Vu investigates the hardships of being a gay refugee in Canada.

Translated from NOS TV in the Netherlands:

LGBT people’s asylum requests often rejected

Added: Monday, September 5, 2011, 10:20

Gay asylum seekers who fear persecution because of their sexual orientation are often rejected on the basis of prejudices and stereotypes. This happens throughout Europe, including the Netherlands, researchers of the COC and the Free University in Amsterdam say.

According to them there is a trend. As an example they name officials not believing that an applicant is gay because he does not behave pansy-like enough or lesbian women of whom is expected that they know exactly what the penalty in their country on sex between women is.


Asylum seekers are regularly sent back with the advice to keep their sexual orientation a secret in their country of origin.

According to the researchers in assessing the asylum claim it is insufficiently taken into account that homosexuality is illegal in many countries. “Asylum seekers from such countries should in principle be granted asylum”, the researchers say.

See also here. And here.

Homophobia at work in the Netherlands: here.

Britain: WHSmith store covers up gay magazines: here.

Legal experts have called on the Scottish government to amend the definition of domestic abuse to ensure that gay and transgendered people suffering violence at home are not rendered “invisible” in the eye of the law: here.

USA: Discharged for Being Gay, Veterans Seek to Re-enlist. James Dao, New York Times News Service: “They lived shadow lives in the military, afraid that disclosure of their sexuality would ruin carefully plotted careers. Many were deeply humiliated by drawn-out investigations and unceremonious discharges”: here.

Boy Scouts Of America Removed Mother From Troop After Discovering She Is A Lesbian: here.

Leisha Hailey, former star of The L-Word tweeted earlier today that she was kicked off a Southwest Airlines flight after kissing her girlfriend, claiming a flight attendant said Southwest was a “family airline.” Leisha is now calling for people to #boycottSouthwest: here. And here.

USA: Employers less likely to interview openly gay men: here.

Britain: The plan to lift restrictions on blood donation by gay men has received a cautious welcome, writes Adrian Roberts: here.

4 thoughts on “European homophobia hurts refugees

  1. Administrator on September 5, 2011 at 5:43 pm said:

    Ruling opens door for Nauru class action

    Kirsty Needham

    September 6, 2011

    Having seen what Nauru did last time, we just can’t go there again” … Phil Glendenning.

    ASYLUM seekers sent to Nauru by the Howard government – and the families of those who died after being returned to Afghanistan – could now sue, lawyers have told the Herald.

    George Newhouse, of Shine Lawyers, said the firm is investigating whether there was a class action for the wrongful removal of detainees from Australia to Nauru on the basis that the minister’s declaration of Nauru ”as a declared country” under section 198A of the Migration Act was invalid.

    Mr Newhouse said there may be statute of limitation concerns, but this and other issues were being compiled into a brief to the former Federal Court judge Ron Merkel, QC.

    The opposition wants to reopen Nauru for offshore processing, but the federal government has argued last week’s High Court decision not only knocks out its Malaysia deal, but also prevents the removal of asylum seekers from Australia to Nauru and Papua New Guinea.

    Stephen Estcourt, QC, in a written opinion for the Edmund Rice Centre, agreed yesterday that the High Court’s ruling meant that removing asylum seekers to Nauru or Papua New Guinea under Section 198A was invalid.

    Mr Estcourt told the Herald this opened the ”distinct possibility” that asylum seekers sent to Nauru by the Howard government could sue.

    ”They would have been removed under a statute that didn’t allow their removal … The potential is there for not just wrongful removal, but wrongful detention,” he said.

    The agreement between Australia and Nauru signed in 2001 ”cannot be practically enforced or relied upon”.

    The Edmund Rice Centre director, Phil Glendenning, said nine Afghans who had been held on Nauru and were sent back to Afghanistan died, including children. Others developed mental illness. ”Having seen what Nauru did last time, we just can’t go there again,” Mr Glendenning said.

    Mr Newhouse sued the Howard government on behalf of Vivian Alvarez Solon, who was illegally removed from an Australian immigration detention to the Philippines in 2001, and was awarded $4.5 million. Another client, Cornelia Rau, who was wrongfully detained, was awarded $2.6 million.

    The Immigration Minister, Chris Bowen, said yesterday the 335 asylum seekers who had arrived after the Malaysia deal was signed would be processed in Australia. ”That’s the right thing to do,” he said.

    The immigration department said it was looking at options to school a large group of unaccompanied teenagers.


  2. Administrator on September 13, 2011 at 6:41 pm said: Edit

    Trans people not ill, army told

    THAILAND: A Bangkok court ordered the military today to stop labelling transgender people as being mentally ill.

    The Thai army conscripts adult males over the age of 18 each year.

    But it has historically disqualified transgender people from the process, classifying them as “having a permanent mental disorder.”

    Transgender activists have long complained that this stigmatises them.


  3. Pingback: Stop sending LGBT people to death in ‘new’ Iraq | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  4. Pingback: Canadian Cold War homophobia, apology at last | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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