|SC||Variations of sex characteristics|
|GR1||Legal gender recognition without self-determination|
|GR2||Legal gender recognition with self-determination (over 16)|
|GR3||Legal gender recognition with self-determination (under 16)|
|FPN||LGBTI focal points network|
|CA||Ministerial call to action|
The Anti-Discrimination law (2009) of Bosnia and Herzegovina was amended in July 2016 and it prohibits discrimination in all aspects of public life, including education, employment, healthcare and provision of services. The document now contains an accurate definition of sexual orientation, gender identity and variations in sex characteristics, and specifies them as prohibited grounds of discrimination. The law, therefore, offers protection for LGBTQI learners.
There is no national anti-bullying plan. However, the government adopted an Action Plan for implementing several anti-discrimination measures in April 2016, which had been drafted by the Ministry of Human Rights and Refugees of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Out of the thirty-two provisions contained in the document, six are directly addressed to protect LGBTQI people’s rights. Among other measures, the action plan specifically aims to reduce discrimination against LGBTQI people and organise institutional trainings on combating homophobia and prejudice. Sarajevo Open Centre, however, reports that none of these measures have been fully implemented as of yet.
According to civil society organisations, national curricula does not include LGBTQI issues. However, a subject called Healthy lifestyles is offered as an alternative to religious education in Sarajevo, one of the Cantons in Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The content of this subject includes positive information on sexual orientation and gender identity.
There are no training courses on LGBTIQ topics within the institutions in charge of education, nor for the teachers or other staff, nor for the students. Sarajevo Open Centre has organised only one formal education for the teaching staff of high schools in one Canton (Unsko-sanski) in FBiH, with the support of the local Ministry of Education, but no further trainings have yet been planned (see Opposition).
The Law on Personal Name FBiH (2012) states that someone can change their name, including minors, if they have undergone gender reassignment procedures. Besides the gender reassignment procedures, they also need consent from their parents. People in the FBiH can only change the sex marker in their official documents after they have completed medical transition, but gender reassignment surgery is not available in Bosnia and Herzegovina and has to be undertaken abroad. The public health care system does not cover any of the costs.
The government does not provide data on homophobic, biphobic, transphobic and interphobic bullying. According to civil society organisations, information on discrimination is neither being collected nor analysed.
Sarajevo Open Centre has recently published studies on discrimination against LGBTQI people. In their latest report (2017), 41,2% of respondents had experienced discrimination in their school on grounds of sexual orientation, gender identity and expression or variations in sex characteristics. In their annual report, the organisation reports a rise in homophobia and transphobia and peer violence in educational institution (see Significant news).
The government provides no specific support systems for LGBTQI learners or their families.
There is no specific information or guidelines for LGBTQI learners or guidance for the education sector on how to address bullying and harassment against LGBTQI students.
Although local civil society organisations work closely with the government to campaign for anti-discrimination measures, there is still no specific support in relation to education.
– Bosnia and Herzegovina has not signed the Call for Action by Ministers – Inclusive and equitable education for all learners in an environment free from discrimination and violence.
– Bosnia and Herzegovina is a member of the European Governmental LGBTI Focal Points Network.
A fourteen-year-old boy from Sarajevo committed suicide in December 2015, after suffering verbal and physical bullying in school over an extended period of time. The boy’s parents and peers have claimed that the boy was a victim of violence and that his classmates had forced him to kiss a male friend while recording it. Afterwards, they tied them up and raped them with a rolling pin. The Institution of Ombudsman and the Prosecutor of Canton Sarajevo announced that they would conduct a detailed investigation of the incident. In March 2016, they published that no evidence was found which would confirm the claims made by the parents and that nothing in this case indicates that a crime was committed. However, this case clearly demonstrates that there is a link between homophobia and violence, and peer-to-peer violence.
Sarajevo Open Centre sent a memo to Cantons and Republika Srpska to put up posters with messages that homophobic peer violence will not be tolerated in schools under their jurisdiction. Unfortunately, only three out of the ten cantonal ministries agreed to do so (Hercegovačko-neretvanski, Zeničko-dobojski i Srednjobosanski Cantons).
From the beginning of 2017, two young men faced ongoing bullying and harassment in their schools by a number of other students’ due to their sexual orientation. They are currently working with a local NGO to address the situation and to get a proper response from institutions in charge.
In April 2017, a book entitled Unease with the Mediaby Fahira Fejzić-Čengić was promoted at the Faculty of Political Sciences. The author has been promoting xenophobia, homophobia and transphobia not only in this book and her other publications and is currently teaching at the Faculty.
When Open Sarajevo Centre held a training for school staff, a magazine published an article providing its readers with the exact location and the names of the facilitators in an attempt to provoke reactions and violence.
Guide on responsible and professional treatment of LGBTI people
Towards responsible and professional treatment of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex persons, by Dajana Cvjetković is a guide for representatives of institutions on the level of municipalities, towns/cities and cantons in BiH. An entire chapter is dedicated to strategies for tackling discrimination on education.
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Numbers of Equality
Sarajevo Open Centre collects data on the problems and needs of LGBTI people in BiH, to target the authorities with well-designed advocacy initiatives aimed at enhancing the rights and the position of the LGBTI community. With a sample of 366 persons, the organisation offers an overview of self-reported discrimination experienced by LGBTI people in BiH.
Covers SO, GIE and SC