According to a new study published by researchers at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, Rutgers University in New Jersey and Leiden Law School, nations who give more rights to the LGBT+ community have a much higher per capita Gross domestic product (GDP) than those who foster social exclusion. Published online in the World Development journal, the study is entitled “The Relationship between LGBT Inclusion and Economic Development: Macro-Level Evidence.”
Researchers used legal and economic data from 132 countries in the periods 1966-2011, including the eight-point Global Index on Legal Recognition of Homosexual Orientation (GILRHO), which helps assess how limiting LGBT rights harms the economy. Created by Dutch law professor Kees Waaldijk, the study used the GILRHO for the first time, which includes categories such as lost labour time, lost productivity, underinvestment in human capital, and the inefficient allocation of human resources, and how they relate to the macroeconomy.
Adding just one additional point on the GILRHO scale is associated with an increase in real GDP per capita of just over USD $2000, and that estimates of the cost of exclusion suggest that 6-22 percent of this amount “could plausibly reflect the GDP costs of excluding LGBT individuals from a full range of legal rights.”
“Many people, including policymakers, may turn a blind eye to the moral argument against discrimination against LGBT individuals. But if the economy is brought up, they are more likely to use money rather than morals to justify reforming policies to protect LGBT rights,” says co-author Yana van der Meulen Rodgers, Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies at Rutgers University. “Policymakers want to see the numbers, so here are the numbers that show the economic effect. Here’s evidence they can use to support change.”
(Link: phys.org, Photo of Gay flag by sigmaration, some rights reserved)
Tags: discrimination, gays, human rights, Leiden, lesbians, LGBT
The Netherlands is no longer in the Top 10 of countries that have well regulated LGBTI rights, now sitting in eleventh place, according to the Rainbow Europe Index 2018.
One of the sticking points is not having any explicit inclusion in the law that says discriminating against transgender and intersex people is illegal. As well, Belgium is doing a better job, something that often provides a ‘wake-up call’ to the Dutch.
Malta is at the top of list, followed by Belgian in second place and Norway in third place.
(Link: parool.nl, Photo of Gay flag by sigmaration, some rights reserved)
Tags: Amsterdam, gays, homosexuality, homosexuals, lesbians, LGBT
Amsterdam’s Homomonument has officially received ‘municipal monument status’, which means it now has a protected status going into the future.
According to the city, the Homomonument has a high cultural value as the first memorial commemorating all gays and lesbians who have been subjected to persecution because of their homosexuality. The city would also like to believe that it is also a symbol for Amsterdam, where everybody can be themselves.
The Homomonument at the Westermarkt fits into the surrounding streets and canals, and is the site for many outdoor activities from the Gay Olympics to all kinds of demonstrations.
(Link: at5.nl, Photo of Homomonument by BoBink, some rights reserved)
Tags: gays, lesbians, LGBT
Berlin has its ‘Ampelmann’ and ‘Ampelfrau’, Haarlem and other Dutch cities have ‘Sofie’, and now Utrecht has gay couples depicted on their pedestrian crossing signs in rainbow colours.
The city of Utrecht wants to show that gay men and women, as well as bisexual and transgender people are welcome in the city. Here’s the bright red gay one and the green lesbian one. Utrecht also has a rainbow colored pedestrian crossing.
Newspaper Metro mentioned that designing the signs cost 1200 euro, which led to online comments ranging from ‘bureaucrats are wasting our money’ and ‘where’s the sign with a straight couple’ to ‘gays and lesbians need to be treated like everyone else, signs won’t change that’. Knowing that Utrecht made the news in 2010 when a gay couple was harassed so much they were forced to move house makes one wonder if pedestrian crossing signs are really the way to go.
(Links: www.rtvutrecht.nl, www.libelle.nl, Photo of Gay flag by sigmaration, some rights reserved)
Tags: gays, Haarlem, lesbians, Utrecht
On Tuesday 1 April legislation kicked in that made the partner of lesbian mothers gain equal rights as the parent of their child. For the longest time, the ‘second’ mother (or co-mother) had to go through a costly adoption procedure in order to become the legal parent of their partner’s child. The procedure lasted at least 6 months, cost at least 1000 euro and was very stressful. If something happened to the child in the mean time, the co-mother had no rights whatsoever, turning the child into an orphan. Thanks to this change in the law, children of lesbian parents have rights that equal those of children born of heterosexual couples.
Before, only the birth mother was considered the mother and a second mother had no legal rights. When a heterosexual couple adopted a child or went through artificial insemination, the father just had to sign some papers and never had to go through any kind of adoption procedure like gay women did.
Once marriage is made legal for homosexuals, the next step is taking care of such parenting issues, so foreign countries, take note.
(Links: www.welingelichtekringen.nl, www.coc.nl, Photo of Crying baby by Chalky Lives, some rights reserved)
Tags: lesbians, rights
After weeks of debating the ‘Zwarte Piet’ tradition during Sinterklaas, which involves blackface considered a tradition here but racist abroad, a steady number of Dutch people on Facebook are now pissed off at the Pope.
The Pope’s famous Dutch saying, “bedankt voor de bloemen” (“thanks for the flowers”), is often the first thing that pops to mind if you mention the Pope to a Dutch person. The Facebook page Geen bloemen naar de Paus (‘No flowers for the Pope’) wants to stop sending flowers to the Pope at Easter and is venting its anger at the Pope’s heteronormative Christmas speech, which angered Foreign Affairs Minister Frans Timmermans who lashed out in the media at the Pope’s ‘homophobia’:
“If every person is unique, as the Pope’s representative said in Dublin last week, then why should that unique person not have the right to stand up for their own sexual orientation? Marriage between two people of the same sex is having respect for the uniqueness of the individual.”
I for one will never, ever get over the amount of child abuse reported from the Catholic church since I was old enough to understand what it was.
The Netherlands was the first country in the world to legalize same-sex marriages, although some controversy remains over municipal officials who refuse to marry gays and lesbians on religious grounds.
Regardless, to quote a gay friend back in the 1990s inspired by the American’s first Bush administration: “Hate is not a family value”.
Tags: Facebook, flowers, gays, homosexuals, lesbians, marriage, Pope, same-sex
For the first time, Amsterdam’s Gay Pride canal parade will feature a Dutch-Turkish boat that fits 80 people. However, the organisers say that it’s mostly gay Turkish men on the boat and that they have few lesbians. “Many women are still afraid of coming out of the closet although many of them simply don’t have an affinity with the whole Gay Pride thing,” explains one of the female organisers.
They could already be full, but the Dutch film in the link says they could use 10 more lesbians. The whole point of the boat is to show that having a Turkish background and being gay goes together in a positive way. And even though they didn’t get any entrepreneurs to sponsor the boat, they’ve only had positive responses, as “emancipation takes time”.
(Link: www.lokum.nl, Photo of Gay flag by sigmaration, some rights reserved)
Tags: gay pride, gays, lesbians, Turks
On 20 April, some 20 kilometres of hiking routes for lesbians will be officially opened in the province of Brabant. In the woods near Alphen lesbians will be able to enjoy nature and “get together”.
The first Dutch “ladies’ route” was opened in North Holland, and there are also routes in Zeeland and Drenthe. Noord-Brabant is now the fourth province to go lesbian friendly. The goal is to have lesbian hiking routes throughout the country.
Tags: Alphen, hiking, lesbians, woods