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Sun Feb 9, 2020, 06:38 PM

Swiss vote to approve legislation to protect LGBTQ+ rights

Source: The Guardian

Swiss vote to approve legislation to protect LGBTQ+ rights

Referendum approves law that was passed in 2018 but was opposed by rightwing parties

Philip Oltermann in Berlin
@philipoltermann
Sun 9 Feb 2020 17.00 GMT
Last modified on Sun 9 Feb 2020 20.00 GMT

Swis voters have given their backing in a referendum to extending anti-racism legislation to cover sexual orientation, defying critics who had claimed such a move would be an infringement of free speech.

Unlike many of its western European neighbours, Switzerland has no law in force that specifically protects LGBTQ+ people from discrimination or hate speech.

A law passed by the country’s government in December 2018 was designed to close this loophole. However, an alliance of rightwing parties including the conservative Christian Federal Democratic Union (EDU) and the nationalist Swiss People’s Party (SVP) opposed the law change and sought a referendum to prevent it from coming into effect.

On flyers and on posters, opponents framed the law as a “gagging clause” that would restrict freedom of speech and demote gay and bisexual members of society to a “weak minority in need of protection”.

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Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/feb/09/swiss-vote-to-approve-legislation-to-protect-lgbtq-rights

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Source: BBC

Switzerland votes in favour of LGBT protection bill

By Imogen Foulkes
BBC News, Bern

9 February 2020

Voters in Switzerland have backed a proposal to make discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and sexual identity illegal.

The result - 63.1% in favour to 36.9% against - is a huge boost for Switzerland's LGBT community.

It had argued Swiss law on the issue lagged far behind other countries in Europe. Opponents of the new law argued it could restrict free speech.

In Switzerland, discrimination because of race or religion is already illegal.

In the run up to the vote, campaigners had said they thought the result would be tight, and that a yes vote of more than 60% was unlikely.

-snip-


Read more: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-51370820


The proposal to make discrimination on the grounds of sexual identity or orientation illegal has proved controversial (Getty Images)

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