The 22nd edition of Belgian Pride, to be held on 20 May in Brussels, will be devoted to “Asylum and Migration”. It will highlight the trials of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Trans (LGBT) asylum seekers, both in their countries of origin and when they arrive in Belgium, announced Thibaut Delsemme, coordinator of Arc-en-Ciel Wallonia, on Wednesday during a press conference on the events organised from 5 to 20 May by the various Arc-en-Ciel Houses in Wallonia.
“About one-third of all states in 2016 consider homosexual relationships to be criminal offenses, and the risk of persecution on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression is real. In many countries this comes from the authorities or non-state actors”, said Thibaut Delsemme. “LGBT + asylum-seekers, particularly transgender persons, are vulnerable to exclusion and violence from other residents. Reception conditions must be adapted to meet the specific needs of these applicants and thus guarantee their inclusion.”
During the fifteen days preceding the Belgian Pride event, and as part of the World Day against homo-trans-phobia on 17 May, various events, both informative and sometimes more playful, will be organised by the various Arc-en Maisons-Ciel houses of Wallonia. For example, it will offer exhibitions, open days, support for future homosexual families (Liège) or two days of sensitisation with concerts and animations in Verviers and Namur.