The Gay Test: Medicalisation and Queer Asylum Seekers

By Alice Gould Homosexuality is illegal in at least 69 countries and discrimination against LGBTI persons is globally rampant. When this discrimination leads to individuals being persecuted because of their sexuality or gender identity, the victims are entitled to asylum under EU law. However, ‘proving’ whether a person is LGBTI, and therefore if their asylum claim is credible, is an almost impossible task. While the situation today is far from perfect, two cases of the Court of Justice of the European Union show how in the past unscientific, and human rights infringing medicalised tests have been used when assessing the sexuality of gay asylum seekers.