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.

Education for Roma: The Key to Equality in Hungary?

By Malina Saf Even though Europe has a high level of access to education, certain groups remain notably excluded and discriminated against. According to Minority Rights Group International, globally, the majority of children who do not take part in school programs belong to a minority. The European Commission on Human Rights notes that school segregation, especially regarding the educational disadvantage and the widespread stigmatisation of Roma is a problem in many European countries. Several documents within the human rights framework explicitly attempt to ensure that Roma fully enjoy equal rights within Europe. But can economic, social and cultural rights contribute to the fight against rising inequality for Roma?

Counter-Terrorism Measures and Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

By Krista Briffett Counter-terrorism measures have, in recent years, gained exponential attention among Westernised societies. Global data collection has revealed that although the number of attacks and fatalities in 2018 have greatly decreased in comparison to the year prior, terrorism is still a very real and pressing issue. By comparison, an estimated 2,173 global attacks resulting in approximately 9,752 deaths occurred in 2018 and approximately 10,900 global attacks resulting in 26, 400 deaths occurred in 2017.

The Complicated Relationship between the ECtHR and Trans Rights

By Liesbet Debecker The European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) is the main body for protecting human rights in Europe, yet it has had a complicated relationship with trans rights. The ECtHR balances between making landmark decisions for the protection of trans rights while denying trans persons other necessary protections. It seems like one of the arguments it often uses to generate change, that of international consensus, is also one of the arguments holding it back.

The Refugee: A Male Definition, a Male Practice?

By Milena Österreicher When you read about refugees in the morning newspaper, hear some refugee-related news on the radio or watch a report on that same topic on television, how often is it that you read about, hear from, or see a female refugee? Women (and girls) tend to be a forgotten topic in the refugee context. Looking at the bare numbers, that might be a surprise. According to UN Women, they represent almost half of the 19.6 million refugees worldwide.

Romania – LGBTI Rights: Accession too soon? Better something than nothing.

By Charles Slidders Romania has a deeply entrenched homophobic culture and, together with Slovakia, competes for the title of the most homophobic country in Europe. Despite joining the European Union and the Council of Europe, and purportedly adopting European values, the country continues to hold deeply prejudicial views of homosexuals. According to the 2015 Eurobarometer public opinion survey, only 36 per cent of Romanians believe that gay, lesbian and bisexual people should have the same rights as heterosexuals, only 24 per cent believe there is nothing wrong with a relationship between two people of the same sex, and only 21 per cent think gay marriage should be legal across Europe.

Taking the World by Storm(ont): Power Sharing in Northern Ireland

By Ashley Reynolds Home to one of the longest conflicts in post-WWII Europe, Northern Ireland continues to deal with the legacy of The Troubles and its resulting political consequences. The Troubles, which lasted from 1969 to 1998, caused more than 3,300 deaths and 47,500 injuries across the territory. While several parties were involved in the violence, two main groups dominated the political landscape: nationalists, who believe Northern Ireland should be part of the Republic of Ireland, and unionists, who believe Northern Ireland should remain in the United Kingdom.

How Your Gender Impacts Your Health

By Liesbet Debecker Recently, I was struck down by one of the severe migraines that have plagued me since puberty. In between trying not to cry or vomit from the pain, I struggled for an answer as to why there was no efficient cure for something so debilitating. As it turns out the answer is not a pleasant one: migraines predominantly affect women and as a result of this, according to multiple academics, have remained largely ignored by science. Unfortunately, this is not the only way that gender affects health. From the actual ailments suffered to diagnosis and treatment, there are a lot of differences based on sex in the way healthcare is received.

Uncovered: the Complicated Relationship between Sport and Hijab

By Cassandra Bockstael Sport is consistently based in discrimination. Often competitions are single gender exclusive, categories are created depending on weight, age, (dis)ability or nationality. This organisation of the sport system is based on what would, in any other context, amount to illegal discrimination. Yet almost all major sporting competitions are structured around those rules. Consequently, this raises the question of when and to what extent are those conditions allowed?