The International Lesbian and Gay Association published a report yesterday which places Iceland tenth out of 49 European countries assessed for their support of the rights of gay, transgendered and intersex people in Europe, RÚV reports.
The report, known as the Rainbow Europe Package, was released to coincide with International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia which is being held today to honour the date when homosexuality was removed from the World Health Organization’s International Classification of Diseases on May 17 1990.
The package reviews the national legal and policy human rights situation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex (LGBTI) people in Europe. It takes into account European countries’ legislation and policies that have a direct impact on the enjoyment of human rights by LGBTI people and provides overall scores for each country on a scale between 0% and 100%. Iceland received a score of 56%.
Meanwhile the UK ranked the highest with a score of 77% and Russia lowest with 7%. The other Scandinavian countries also received higher scores than Iceland, with Norway and Sweden leading the Nordic pack with 66% and 65% respectively.
Anna Pála Sverrisdóttir, president of Samtökin ´78, Iceland’s National Queer Organization, said she expected Icelanders to feel somewhat disappointed with their ranking. While acknowledging Iceland’s progress in some LGBTI issues, Anna stated that more work is needed, such as explicitly recognizing LGBTI rights and issues in the new constitution, clearer action plans and policies against homophobia and hate crimes, a well as a state-run human rights institute.