LGBT organisations react: “Meetings are part of the National Action Plan, MAS should take the responsibility”
The Alliance Against Discrimination LGBT and Pro LGBT are following closely how particular segments of the Albanian politic, for the umpteenth time are spearheading an ugly attack on human rights.
This repeated attack of dishonest politicians, aimed at bringing quick political benefits is appealing to a society, that is, unfortunately for the large part, still uninformed. In order for the orchestrated attack to be effective, the language used seeks to induce panic and fear. This is not only an attack towards LGBT organisations, but also a strategy aimed at misinforming the public and accrue political credit to some politicians, who failed at making this country a better place, when they had the opportunity.
It is not the first time that politicians like Mr. Ylli Manjani, former Minister of Justice who should be familiar with all the conventions ratified by the Republic of Albania, including the European Convention on Human Rights, openly talks against LGBT rights. Neither is it the first time for Tritan Shehu. During his past, as part of the youth organisations of his party, Mr. Shehu’s cause was to attack churches and mosques. Today, his cause is attacking human rights. The cause, per se, is the same; it is just the target and means that have changed. Also, it’s not the first time for Mesila Doda.
What brings these politicians together is the fact that they all have failed; their failures are all they are remembered about by the people. But this doesn’t bother us. They consciously have chosen to survive by endless failure.
What worries us is the fact that the Ministry of Education refuses to take its side and tries at any cost to remove itself from the debate, despite it being the main institution tasked with the implementation of the National Action Plan Against LGBT Discrimination, as sanctioned by the Council of Ministers Decision no. 390, dated 25.5.2016.
We remind the Ministry of Education that these meetings are not conducted by sneaking at night in schools, but they take place in the framework of the National Action Plan for LGBTI Persons in Albania, a strategy approved by the Albanian government in June 2016. The Ministry’s rebuttal in this case shows once again that the government has failed to fulfil the commitments it has undertaken during the past two years.
The Ministry of Education is one of the key institutions responsible for implementing this plan which includes, educational and awareness raising activities with teachers, school psychologists and students.
The European Report on LGBT Education Rights ranks Albania among the last countries of the Council of Europe on issues such as: access to education, the right to have trained teachers and motivation policies for students. Based on a Council of Europe study conducted in Albania by Edmond Dragoti and Emanuela Ismaili, 60% of teachers in the Albanian education system say that bullying in schools is a problem and 77.2% of them say they need to be trained.
As a result, students and youth, who are part of an environment where sexual orientation or gender identity is not mentioned or discussed in the curricula are the victims of high numbers of suicides and daily occurrences of bullying on grounds of sexual orientation.