There is conclusive evidence that anti-LGBT hate crime persists across Europe.
According to FRA LGBT Survey (2013), more than one in four (26%) LGBT people had been attacked
or threatened with violence in the five years preceding the research.
National victimization surveys, as well as cases collected by civil society organizations
and reported to ODIHR, also show a high number of anti-LGBT hate crime across the region.
Homophobic and transphobic violence remains underreported across Europe.
Fewer than one in five of the incidents (17%) are brought to the attention of the police.
Trans-border efforts to tackle this phenomenon are yet to be cohesively developed.
There is no international obligation to treat sexual orientation and gender identity as protected grounds in national criminal law. The rights of the victims of anti-LGBT hate crimes are addressed in the Directive 2012/29/EU on the rights, support and protection of victims of crime. The Directive requires EU Member States, inter alia, to ensure that victims of hate crime have access to specialized support services addressing their individual needs. At the same time, victims and witnesses must be given the opportunity of reporting the incident to the police and access to redress. In order to successfully combat anti-LGBT hate crime, an effective multi-agency response, addressing both underreporting and the provision of accessible victim support services, is needed.
The project Come Forward: Empowering and Supporting Victims of Anti-LGBT Hate Crimes, which lasts for 24 months (from December 2016 to November 2018), answers to these needs through a mix of activities, which aim at: