Malta Ranks Number One in European Rainbow Map of Gay Rights

Prosit Malta!

The Mediterranean country overtook both the United Kingdom and Belgium to rank top with 89%.

The index is designed to show the percentage of positive and inclusive LGBTI laws a country has. Unsurprisingly, the results highlight a massive disparity across the continent. 

Turkey, Russia and Azerbaijan all rank at the bottom with less than 10% each.

Malta's rise up the rankings is impressive (in 2013, they only placed 18th), and is largely due to a series of changes to the country's laws including LGBTI anti-discrimination legislation passed in 2014. 

The results are clear to see on the Rainbow Map: Malta has surpassed countries with longer, more publicised pro-LGBTI histories. 

This should be a comfort to the LGBTI communities living elsewhere in the world. Reform in Malta was largely due to a single change of government.

Malta does not, however, currently allow same-sex marriage (although it does recognise same-sex marriages made abroad). Support is growing, however. 

In 2006, 18% of people polled were in favour of same-sex marriage. By 2012, that number was 42%, and it’s likely to have risen since then. 

What Malta represents to LGBTI communites across the world is hope. Gay rights didn't appear in the country overnight but once given the right political and social environment, they flourished. 

The Irish referendum on gay marriage would be another example of this: countries can change their laws for the better.
So congratulations Malta! You’ve done some amazing work, but there’s still more to be done. 

You’re not finished until you hit 100% on the Rainbow Map. 

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