New study criticizes lack of legal protection for LGBTs in Turkey

New study criticizes lack of legal protection for LGBTs in Turkey


The planned LGBT Pride march in Istanbul in June 2015 was subjected to a harsh police crackdown. AFP photo

One of the key obstacles facing Turkey’s LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) community is the continued lack of legal protection, according to a new study of discrimination against LGBTs in the country.

“The results of our research unfortunately show that in most workplaces in Turkey there are no procedures or practices to protect LGBT employees from discrimination or to meet their special needs. What’s more, discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity still isn’t included within the protected grounds in the constitution or the labor law. This remains the main obstacle to the implementation of equal citizenship for Turkey’s LGBT citizens,” writes co-author Melek Göregenli in the report’s introduction.

“Many of our respondents had recommendations related to Turkey’s constitution, legislation and company regulations,” she added.

The German Embassy in Ankara on May 18 hosted a joint event with the Ankara-based Kaos Gay and Lesbian Cultural Researches and Solidarity Association (Kaos GL) to present the report on the “Situation of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Employees in Private Sector in Turkey.” 

The launch of the report was held to mark the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, observed on May 17. 

The embassy residence in central Ankara also flew a rainbow flag in a show of support for Turkey’s LGBT community on May 17. 

The first edition of the new study, which was prepared by Göregenli and Tanju Ş. Serdengeçti and edited by Murat Köylü, was published with the support of Kaos GL.