In many EU Member States, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people face discrimination and harassment on a daily basis. Prejudices and misconceptions about homosexuality and transgender persons further fuel intolerant attitudes and behaviour towards this community.

FRA research over the last five years has found that LGBT persons face discrimination across all areas of social and economic life, are vulnerable to verbal and physical attacks and remain largely invisible out of fear of negative consequences. In 2012, some 93,000 LGBT people responded to an EU-wide survey which FRA carried out to discover the everyday issues affecting LGBT people. This survey collected comparable data on LGBT people’s experiences of hate crime and discrimination, as well as their level of awareness about their rights. The final survey results were published in May 2013. The results of the survey will be supplemented by research among public officials and key service providers in the area of education, health and law enforcement, with the aim of identifying barriers to the full implementation of LGBT rights.

Globally, UN treaty bodies have included sexual orientation and gender identity on the open-ended lists of discrimination grounds on the basis of the relevant UN covenants. In the EU, lesbian, bisexual and gay people are currently protected from discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation under EU law in the field of employment only. Transgender persons are protected from discrimination on the ground of sex to the extent that discrimination arises from gender reassignment (the EU directive implementing the principle of equal treatment between men and women in the access to and supply of goods and services).

The EU’s Charter of Fundamental Rights prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation. Transgender persons are protected from discrimination on the ground of ‘sex’ in the Charter of Fundamental Rights, in line with the jurisprudence of the Court of Justice.

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Migrant tragedies, one of many fundamental rights challenges that need tackling, finds FRA

Record numbers of migrants died as they tried to cross the Mediterranean to reach Europe in 2014. Member States should therefore consider offering more legal possibilities for people in need of international protection to enter the EU, as viable alternatives to risky irregular entry. This is one of the conclusions from this year’s Annual report which looks at developments across the EU in many areas over 2014.

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Findings available

Surveying LGBT people and authorities

This project encompasses two related surveys: A survey on discrimination against and victimisation of LGBT people. This survey aims to generate comparable data about the actual experiences of LGBT people living in the EU today This will be complemented by the views of public official and professionals in 19 Member States.

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Fundamental rights: challenges and achievements in 2014 - Annual report

Annual report
European Union (EU) Member States and institutions introduced a number of legal and policy measures in 2014 to safeguard fundamental rights in the EU. Notwithstanding these efforts, a great deal remains to be done, and it can be seen that the situation in some areas is alarming: the number of migrants rescued or apprehended at sea as they were trying to reach Europe’s borders quadrupled over 2013; more than a quarter of children in the EU are at risk of poverty or social exclusion; and an increasing number of political parties use xenophobic and anti-immigrant rhetoric in their campaigns, potentially increasing some people’s vulnerability to becoming victims of crime or hate crime.

The fundamental rights situation of intersex people

This paper examines the legal situation of intersex people from a fundamental rights perspective. It draws on evidence from the Agency’s updated legal analysis on homophobia, transphobia, and discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity, which now includes a section on intersex issues.

Being Trans in the EU - Comparative analysis of the EU LGBT survey data

Trans persons, or those whose gender identity and/or gender expression differs from the sex assigned them at birth, face frequent discrimination, harassment and violence across the European Union (EU) today. This reality triggers fears that persuade many to hide or disguise their true selves. This report examines issues of equal treatment and discrimination on two grounds, namely sexual orientation and gender identity. It analyses data on the experiences of 6,579 trans respondents from the EU Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) survey, the largest body of empirical evidence of its kind to date.