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6th December 2018

Homophobia now a criminal offence in Switzerland

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  • Homophobia now a criminal offence in Switzerland

The Swiss parliament has recently announced that it is extending the scope of legal protection for acts of discrimination based on sexual orientation, with both houses of parliament now approving a motion to criminalise homophobia. Homophobia is to be included in the same category as racism in the Swiss criminal code, and anyone who violates the law, either with racist or homophobic acts, can be sentenced to up to three years in prison.

Although Switzerland has made progress by extending the law to include sexual orientation, it has so far excluded discrimination based on gender identity. Excluding discrimination based on gender identity further marginalises Trans and Intersex people from society, and puts them at a heightened risk. Activists argue that to ensure the protection of these groups, and to be a fully inclusive society, the government needs to update the laws to include discrimination based on gender identity.

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