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.

Latest news View all


A new era for combating discrimination faced by LGBTI people

The call for more equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) people takes centre stage at a high-level conference at the Council of the EU in Brussels on 28 October 2014. It is the first time a Presidency of the Council of the EU convenes such a meeting, signalling a renewed drive by EU institutions to tackle the discrimination and hostility still faced by LGBTI people across Europe today.

Latest projects View all

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 ...

Latest publications View all


Fundamental rights: key legal and policy developments in 2013. Highlights 2013

Annual report
The EU and its Member States took a variety of important steps in 2013 to protect and promote fundamental rights by assuming new international commitments, revamping legislation and pursuing innovative policies on the ground. Yet, fundamental rights violations seized the spotlight with distressing frequency: would‑be migrants drowning off the EU’s coast, unprecedented mass surveillance, racist and extremist‑motivated murders, child poverty and Roma deprivation.

Fundamental rights: challenges and achievements in 2013 - Annual report 2013

Annual report
This year’s FRA annual report looks at fundamental rights-related developments in asylum, immigration and integration; border control and visa policy; information society, respect for private life and data protection; the rights of the child and the protection of children; equality and non-discrimination; racism, xenophobia and related intolerance; access to justice and judicial cooperation; rights of crime victims; EU Member States and international obligations.