European Committee for Social Cohesion, Human Dignity and Equality


Roundtable on May 27, 2015


Social inclusion of all persons and in particular of all persons in vulnerable situations and the effectiveness of rights


Inclusion of vulnerable groups in the drafting of legislation and policies


Good practice on the participation of the LGBTI people into official decision-making


Aija Salo, Seta – LGBTI Rights in Finland








LGBTI: lesbian, gay, bi/pansexual, trans and intersex


Discrimination grounds: sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, intersex




General situation of inclusion and participation of LGBTI in drafting legislation and policies


- in LGBTI specific legislation and policies: several LGBTI organisations are being consulted, invited to hearings, even invited to expert groups


- in non-LGBTI specific legislation and policies: big variation between ministries and issues




- many ongoing or past legislative procedures have been initiated by LGBTI organisations and other human rights groups advocating for LGBTI equality: registered partnership, second-parent adoption, legal gender recognition, maternity act


- the citizens' initiative as a new democratic tool for raising issues: marriage equality






- coordination of LGBTI policy in the government; a comprehensive LGBTI programme


- addressing multiple discrimination






- mainstreaming of the perspective of diversity of gender and sexual orientation in various policy areas

- children's rights, women's rights and gender equality policies, violence and victims' rights, elderly care, early education, primary and secondary education, teacher training, sex ed, immigration & asylum, employment, prison, police, justice system




Question marks


To which extent do the CSOs views have effect on the outcomes?


Politization” of many human rights issues such as legal gender recognition




Question marks


- big structural / economic procedures often proceed without minority perspectives


- the government's EU policy often without coordination from LGBTI perspective; CSOs not informed as EU issues are scattered to differend ministries


- trade unions and employers' organisations have a big say in many legislative matters, for example family benefits




Local authorities


- bound by the anti-discrimination legislation and human rights conventions

- level of knowledge of LGBTI often nonexistent

- mainstreaming and policy impact hard to reach

- good practices: LGBTI youth groups, trainings to elderly care staff, public libraries ”rainbow shelves”




Examples of past or current good practices


Ministry for Foreign Affairs


- working group for the implementation of CM/Rec(2010)5 (2010-2011)

- drafting of the human rights strategy of the ministry (2013)

- evaluation of the human rights strategy of the ministry (2014-15)

- UPR procedure and other reports to the UN treaty bodies




Ministry of Justice


- non-discrimination legislation

- CSO panel for preparing and monitoring the first national plan of action for basic rights and human rights

- inter-ministerial network for basic rights and human rights LGBTI working group & report




Ministry of Social Affairs and Health


- legal gender recognition expert group

- gender equality act reform

- gender equality policy programme

- HIV expert group

- policy programme for sexual and reproductive health

- quality recommendations for the act on care services for the elderly




Ministry of Education and Culture


- Child And Youth Policy Programme 2012-2015: funding for several LGBTI projects

- advisory council for youth affairs

- preparation of the youth act

- comprehensive school and high school curricula

- Finnish education evaluation centre




Ministry of the Interior


- discrimination monitoring group

- expert group for evaluation of effects (of legislation) for equality

- preparations for extension of the mandate of the minority ombudsman to non-discrimination ombudsman

- training for the immigration authority






- training for the ombudsman's staff

- national human rights institution – human rights delegation

- public hearing on the marriage equality citizens' initiative

- founding of an MP LGBTI network




Thank you!