This issue contains 4 sections.
Social acceptance of LGBTs
Many LGBTs in the Netherlands still do not feel safe enough in their day-to-day lives (at work or school, in sports clubs, care institutions or neighbourhoods) to come out of the closet. Social acceptance needs to improve both in LGBT people’s living and working environment and in certain ethnic minority and religious communities.
Measures to enhance social acceptance of LGBTs
The government will provide financial support for Gay-Straight Alliances (GSAs) between gay and other civil society organisations aimed at enhancing the social acceptance of LGBTs in the Netherlands. The government itself will take the following measures to enhance social acceptance:
- Acceptance of LGBTs in their living and working environments
The government will continue to invest in LGBT rights in workplaces, educational institutions and sports clubs and among older people. GSAs will take targeted measures in their own particular fields and will call on broader organisations to take responsibility for helping to promote the safety and social acceptance of LGBTs.
Particular attention will be paid to the problems of lesbians, bisexuals and transgenders. For example, many transgenders are unemployed because they do not feel accepted in workplaces.
The government wants LGBTs to have better protection in their homes and not to be bullied out of their neighbourhoods. A new GSA on housing will therefore be established.
- Acceptance of homosexuality in ethnic minority and religious communities
The acceptance of LGBTs is particularly problematic among ethnic minorities and orthodox religious communities. The government will continue to work on changing the culture of silence surrounding homosexuality via nationwide GSAs in which multiethnic gay and other organisations work together with LGBTs from the Turkish, Moroccan, Antillean and conservative Christian communities.
- Changing the culture of silence surrounding homosexuality in the Caribbean Netherlands
The government will help to foster tolerance and acceptance of LGBTs on the three islands that form the Netherlands in the Caribbean by strengthening local LGBT communities in the region and by supporting the Pink Orange Accord. Measures will include establishing digital and other meeting places and LGBT meetings for dialogue.
By 10 October 2012 at the latest, it will be possible for same-sex couples to marry in the Netherlands in the Caribbean. Same-sex marriages performed in the Netherlands are already recognised there.
- Helping transgenders with work, health care and education
Many transgenders are unemployed. They frequently experience violence and have severe psychosocial problems. The government will support groups like the Dutch Transgender Network, which works for transgender rights in schools and workplaces. The government will also improve health care for transgenders, for example by reducing waiting times for hospital sex reassignment therapy.
Dutch Government Pride Platform
LGBTs employed within government have taken the initiative of setting up the Dutch Government Pride Platform to promote gay rights in the workplace. The initiative is receiving financial support from the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science.