LI President of Honour and ALDE Party President Hans Van Baalen MEP has endorsed the new LGBTI Liberals of Europe Network which was founded on the fringes of EuroPride in Stockholm, Sweden at a gala dinner event hosted by the Swedish International Liberal Center (SILC, LI cooperating organisation). The LGBTI Liberals of Europe is a European organisation formed of liberal LGBTI networks from across Europe and it was established by HBT Liberalerna (Sweden), Certi Diritti (Italy), Gaylib (France) and LiSL (Germany).
Commenting on the importance of the network in an exclusive video interview conducted by the Chair of LI LGBTI Rights Working Group Frank Van Dalen , Van Baalen said: ” It is essential that we continue to fight for equal rights because there is regression. The progress we have made should be secured. LGBTI Rights is about recognition of human rights and we have to talk to others and lead initiatives such as this network in order to get the message out. Liberal International and its LGBTI Rights Working Group can also play an immense role in this en-devour. “
“LGBTI Rights is about recognition of human rights and we have to talk to others and lead initiatives such as this network in order to get the message out. Liberal International and its LGBTI Rights Working Group can play an immense role in this en-devour.”
Van Baalen was also asked to reflect on the difficulties many politicians face when having to defend LGBTI rights in more conservative environments where this may lead to a loss of electoral votes. “If you are for equality you can’t hide. You have to speak out. You wont lose the elections if you do it the right way” he said reminding of the fact that even his native Netherlands was at one point hostile and discriminatory to its LGBTI citizens.
The full interview is available on LI YouTube channel by clicking here.
The LGBTI Liberals of Europe network will have three membership categories: full member organisations (independent, democratic, liberal LGBTI organisations); observer member organisations (Liberal LGBTI organisations and networks which are not fully independent, e.g. LGBTI committees within liberal parties or informal liberal LGBTI networks); and individual members in countries where there is no full member organisation. The first President of the organisation is Ralf Fröhlich from LiSL, Germany.