The Hague, Netherlands ( Associated Press) – The Dutch Senate approved a constitutional amendment Tuesday that expanded its first article to specifically ban discrimination based on sexual orientation or disability, mired by human rights groups. was hailed as a stepping stone.
The updated version of the first article of the Dutch national constitution states that all residents of the country should be treated equally without “discrimination on grounds of religion, belief, political opinion, race, gender, disability, sexual orientation or any other”.
Astrid Osenbrugg, leader of the Dutch gay rights organization CoC, called the vote by the group “a historic victory for the rainbow community and a capstone on years of efforts”.
He added that “It is an emotional moment when, after so many years, the Senate voted overwhelmingly in favor of this constitutional recognition. Finally, LGBTI+ rights are proudly enshrined in the first article and are no longer hidden.” “
In 2001, the Netherlands became the first country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage, but members of the LGBTQ community continue to face verbal and sometimes physical abuse in a country considered a bastion of tolerance.
Osenbrugh said the constitutional amendment should be seen as a call by lawmakers to “combat discriminatory violence, bullying in schools and other forms of discrimination”.
A group called Idar (IN), which represents people with disabilities or chronic illnesses, also applauded the move.
“The banning of discrimination against disability is historic,” Ilia Sofer, the organization’s director, said in a press release. “The government has been given the additional mission of permanently improving and strengthening the status of people with disabilities. Not only in theory, but also in practice. This is very essential, as these people currently face discrimination and exclusion every day in their lives. fall prey to.