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Rainbow Cities newsletter
5th edition Rainbow Cities Newsletter
The City of Amsterdam, together with the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science, has taken the initiative to issue this quarterly newsletter. The editor of this newsletter is Juul van Hoof, coordinator of the Rainbow Cities Network.

The focus is on initiatives, backgrounds and developments with regard to LGBT policy issues at local or regional level. This newsletter is mainly aimed at policy makers and NGO’s operating on the local level. The newsletter originates from the Rainbow Cities Network, of which more information can be found here.
Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna: the LGBTI community involved
EuroPride 2015 in Riga: Latvia turning its face towards equality
Istanbul Pride 2015: historic for all the wrong reasons
And more
London: #RidewithPride
To coincide with the annual Pride in London festival – which took place last June – Transport for London (TfL) have unveiled the latest addition to their #RidewithPride initiative. After unveiling a rainbow-adorned bus in March, and a rainbow-emblazoned taxi cab in May, TfL today revealed a rainbow-covered train on its Docklands Light Railway system.
Eurovision Song Contest in Vienna: LGBTI community involved
During the Eurovision Song Contest last May, the Viennese Antidiscrimination Unit for lesbian, gay and transgender issues organised 12 public events: A panel discussion with It gets Better USA, a Meet & Greet for international visitors to come to know the local LGBTI-community, a panel discussion on homophobic song lyrics, LGBTI-themed guided tours through the city and a review on the Song Contest and its influences on the international LGBTI-community. Find the full programma.
EuroPride 2015 in Riga: Latvia turning its face towards equality
On 20 June 2015, the Latvian capital of Riga hosted EuroPride, becoming the first former USSR country to do so. The historic and successful event brought together 5,000 people from across the continent. This year’s Europride took place in a truly festive and celebratory atmosphere, without any significant incidents. ILGA Europe congratulated the organisers. Next year EuroPride will take place in Amsterdam between 23 July and 7 August 2016.
Istanbul Pride 2015: historic for all the wrong reasons
For the first time in 12 years, Istanbul’s Pride parade was disrupted on 28 June 2015 as the police force fired water cannons and rubber bullets at those who had peacefully gathered to celebrate diversity. The local authorities had also banned the parade at the last minute. ILGA-Europe strongly condemn the actions of the police and view their actions as a severe infringement on the right to freedom of assembly in Turkey. ILGA Europe expressed their concern and called for action. Read more.
International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia in Ljubljana
A round table 'Every day lives of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people' was held in the City Hall. Participants presented their research results and own experience. After the discussion Mayor Zoran Janković awarded LGBT friendly certificates. The recipients of the certificate were the Home Care Institute Ljubljana, the Public Housing Fund of the City of Ljubljana and the National Institute of Public Health. The municipal project LGBT friendly Ljubljana is among the projects that received a Best Practice Certificate EPSA 2015.
LGBTTI anti-discrimination policies in Mexico City
With national laws and provisions lacking on LGBTI issues, Mexico City has been executing an LGBTI inclusive anti-discrimination policy. After a research in 2013, in which the LGBTTI community turned out to be amongst the top 3 victims of discrimination in the city COPRED, the City Council on Prevention and Elimination of Discrimination, decided to develop proactive measures to guarantee safety and inclusion of LGBTTI citizens. Mexico City is currently considering membership of the Rainbow Cities Network. More information, in Spanish, can be found here, including a link to the English translation of the 2013 research.
Pedestrian lights portraying lesbian, gay and straight couples
The City of Vienna invented new designs for pedestrian lights, now showing lesbian, gay and straight couples as motives to show diversity and acceptance in the streets. International media showed their interest and other cities like Salzburg, Munich and Hamburg took on this idea.
Rainbow Package 2015 by ILGA-Europe
ILGA-Europe put together a package of useful resources that LGBT NGO’s, national and local policy makers can refer to all year round. The Rainbow Package deals mainly with figures and developments on a national level, but it is nonetheless of interest to local governments and stakeholders. The Package consists of:

•    Rainbow Europe Map – ranking 49 European countries on their respective legal and policy practices for LGBTI people, from 0-100%.
•    Annual Review – a detailed country-by-country look at the advances made at national level in the 12 months from 1 January 2014 to 31 December 2014.
•    Rainbow Module: a free online collection of all the data that lies behind the Rainbow Europe Map, accessible to view on desktops, tablets or smartphones.

The Rainbow Package can be accessed via www.rainbow-europe.org.
LGBTI street actions in Russian cities held despite fierce opposition
Despite disruption attempts, attacks, and threats LGBTI street actions in Moscow and St Petersburg on the Day of Silence, April 17th, were held. In St Petersburg activists encountered aggression from violent oppositional groups, but reportedly had certain support from the police; in Moscow the protest was dispersed by the police officers and had to be moved to remote city areas. Find out more about two actions in St Petersburg here, and the Moscow rally here.
First ever Pride event in Gdansk, Poland
On 30 May, the first ever Pride event was held in the Polish city, Gdansk, under the motto 'We are Family'. The event took place without any incidents. More information on the event can be found on their website, in English.
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