Georgia’s Anti-lGBTQ+ Bill Gets Its First Reading in the Legislature

Georgia's Anti-lgbtq+ Bill Gets Its First Reading in the Legislature

Even though “concerns across the international community,” an anti-LGBTQ+ bill passed its first reading in the Georgian parliament on Thursday. The bill is meant to protect “family values and minors,” but it has been criticized for being in conflict with human rights and having an effect on LGBTQ+ people.

This bill was first brought up by the Georgian Dream party earlier this year. After its first reading in parliament, with 78 votes in favor, it was passed uncontested. The bill was meant to protect family values, but it would have a big effect on LGBTQ+ human rights. Transgender people are especially at risk because the bill prohibits “any medical intervention aimed at changing sex” and says that any state papers must say “male or female” “in compliance with genetic data.” This means that transgender people can’t say what gender they want to be. Finally, the bill doesn’t allow events or materials that support “changing sex by medical intervention” or that support same-sex families and relationships. This includes anything that would stop same-sex partners from promoting adoption or foster care of children, which is also against the law under this bill.

Before the law was passed in its first reading, the Venice Commission looked at it and said it didn’t meet international human rights standards. They found that most parts of the bill violated human rights, especially the right to privacy, the right not to be discriminated against, the right to free speech, and the right to gather without being censored.

They said that “some sections of the Georgian population may have a negative attitude toward LGBTI people,” but that didn’t mean that the law was okay even though it went against human rights. The Commission told the government to “rethink this legislative proposal completely and… not go ahead with its adoption.”

The Georgia legislature’s spring session ends this week, even though the plan has been criticized. As a result, this plan will probably start moving through the legislative process again in September.

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