THE LESBIAN, gay, bisexual, and transgender community (LGBT) will be represented within the government by an official body – a committee under the government’s Council for Human Rights, National Minorities, and Gender Equality. The creation of the committee was passed by Robert Fico’s cabinet at its session on October 3, the SITA newswire reported.
The previous cabinet of Iveta Radičová left the LGBT community disappointed after the council was created and its new members proposed that seven committees be created under its auspices in May 2011, based on the grounds for discrimination as defined by Slovakia’s Anti-Discrimination Act. The cabinet agreed to establish six of them, but not the committee to monitor the rights of LGBT citizens.
The newly-created committee is a standing expert body of the council and will be chaired by Justice Minister Tomáš Borec.
Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajčák, whose department is responsible for the human rights agenda, admitted that the rights of LGBT people are a sensitive topic that polarises Slovak society, but one should not put one’s head in the sand when faced with sensitive topics, SITA wrote.
The cabinet’s decision was indeed welcome by LGBT and human rights organisations, but criticised by the representatives of the Conference of Bishops of Slovakia and the Life Forum civic association.