Press release by GenderDoc-M
"Moldovan Gay and Lesbian Empowerment" is the largest gay and lesbian project
in the post-Soviet territory.
The opening of the project "Moldovan Gay and Lesbian Empowerment" took place
on October 18, 2001 in Chisinau, Moldova. It is a twinning project between
the Dutch lesbian and gay advocacy organisation COC Netherlands and Center
GenderDoc-M (Moldova) and is the first initiative on protection of gay and
lesbian rights at such a large scale in the post-Soviet territory. The
financial support is given by the Royal Dutch Embassy in Ukraine and Moldova
via the Good Governance and Human Rights Fund of the Ministry of Foreign
Affairs of the Netherlands.
Alexei Marcicov, Director of GenderDoc-M
At the reception were present the First Secretary of the Royal Netherlands
Embassy in Kiev Ms. Meie Kiel, Desk Officer of the Eastern European Division
of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs Mr. Rob Dekker, project
coordinator on behalf of COC Netherlands Dennis van der Veur, and also
representatives of national and international NGO's, embassies, funders,
numerous Moldovan and Dutch journalists. In his speech to the guests
director of Center "GenderDoc-M" Mr. Alexei Marcicov stated, that "the
project, as litmus paper, will reveal the level of tolerance of Moldovan
society and the willingness of authorities to continue democratic reforms".
Ms. Meie Kiel stated, that she was "happy there are brave people in Moldova,
who came forward with the initiative to fight for gay and lesbian rights".
As project coordinator from Dutch partner organizations Dennis van der Veur
declared, "the Netherlands give to the project not only financial, but both
moral and political support".
Today the sexual minorities in Moldova are one of the most discriminated
social groups. Violence, blackmailing, constant "visits" to the police
stations, verbal abuse, firing from the job, hate propaganda from some of
the newspapers, homophobic speeches by some members of the parliament - all
these factors led to creation of culture of fear among homosexual community
in Moldova. It is enough to recall the words of Moldovan parliamentarian and
PACE member within European People's Party group Mr. Vlad Cubreacov, who
declared recently in his interview to "Jurnal National": "To be a homosexual
doesn't only mean you are no longer father or mother, it means you are no
longer a human being. They are people, fallen before the face of God and the
entire society". The overwhelming majority of gays and lesbians in Moldova
has been and is discriminated against in one way or another. For more
concrete information please refer to the report of COC Netherlands/ Dennis
van der Veur "Homosexuals in the republic of Moldova: we need cleaner places
than public toilets", published in Amsterdam in February 2001.
Van der Veur (COC) and Marcicov (GenderDoc-M) sign the co-operation contract.
The three-year project "Moldovan Gay and Lesbian Empowerment" includes four
sub-projects: organizational development, awareness raising campaign, legal
assistance and safe environment. Legal program provisions juridical
consultations in cases of discrimination or violence, monitoring of Moldovan
legislation, drafting an anti-discrimination law, seminars on human rights
for gay and lesbian community. Safe environment includes psychological
assistance and counseling, creation of support groups, individual counseling
(implemented in cooperation with Schorer Foundation, Netherlands). Within
the awareness raising campaign will continue the issue of gay and lesbian
magazine "Mirror", educational seminars for different target groups,
publication and distribution of brochures and booklets on gay/lesbian
issues. Organizational development will build up the skills and capacities
of GenderDoc-M to protect gay and lesbian rights, create functional
structure, provide office and equipment. All these under supervision and
constant communication / expertise from COC Netherlands.
Drinking to the project's success.
After completion of the project GenderDoc-M is expected to be a sustainable
gay and lesbian advocacy organization. Although realizing the changes cannot
happen overnight, and not even in three years, our long term expectations
are that the general situation of gays and lesbians will be improved in the
country, and a new culture, culture of pride and tolerance, to replace the
dominant culture of fear.
For more information please, contact us at phone (3732) 278 792, fax (3732) 567 551, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, or write to: C.P. 422, MD 2004,
Chisinau, Republica Moldova. Contact person: Maxim Anmeghichean.
To get a copy of the report "Homosexuals in the Republic of Moldova: we need
cleaner places than public toilets" by COC/Dennis van der Veur, please send
your request to: firstname.lastname@example.org or Postbus 3836, 1001 AP Amsterdam, Netherlands.
October 30, 2001