|Variations of sex characteristics
|Legal gender recognition without self-determination
|Legal gender recognition with self-determination (over 16)
|Legal gender recognition with self-determination (under 16)
|LGBTI focal points network
|Ministerial call to action
There are no anti-discrimination laws that mention sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, or variations in sex characteristics as protected grounds of discrimination with regard to education. While not applicable to the educational context, Latvia did pass an amendment to the Labour Law to ban sexual orientation discrimination in employment (as the last country in the EU to comply with the requirements of the 2000 EU employment equality directive).
To the contrary, in 2015, the Latvian parliament approved an amendment to the educational law requiring “moral education” in schools in line with the values of the Latvian Constitution including with respect to marriage (which a 2005 amendment to the constitution defines as being between a man and a woman). According to the latest ILGA-Europe Annual Review 2017, schools should promote values like family, marriage, culture and the Latvian nation. The guidelines also prohibit sharing materials which feature “propaganda of degrading or immoral activities.”
There are no national policies or action plans to tackle homophobic, biphobic, transphobic or interphobic bullying or promote LGBTQI inclusion. The recent 2015 amendment to the educational law described above suggests there may actually be a movement away from such policies or plans.
There are no guidelines on how to include LGBTQI issues within the school curriculum. Civil society organisations report that health is the only subject that includes sexuality, but not sexual orientation, and it is up to teachers to decide if and how they address this content.
There is currently no mandatory teacher training on LGBTQI awareness.
The Latvian Civil Code (2012) foresees that people have the right to change the designation of their sex. Section 37(2) of the Civil Code provides that a person may submit a court judgment, administrative act, medical certificate, or other document to prove gender “reassignment,” in which case the birth register shall be supplemented accordingly. However, the law remains unclear, so individuals attempting to make use of this law may face bureaucratic difficulties.
The government does not provide data on homophobic, biphobic, transphobic and interphobic bullying. Some information is collected through individual studies or research by either local, national or international organisations, but it is not consistent and focusses on different variables.
There are several helplines that are not specifically covering sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, or variations in sex characteristics, but are working with a positive and inclusive attitude towards all people and children. LGBTQI specific support is provided by Association of LGBT and their friends MOZAIKA, which can offer assistance and information in such cases, as well as legal support, but this is not publicly funded.
Although it is not forbidden to organise support systems for LGBTQI students, there was a case where high school students, with support of some teachers, tried to start a gay-straight alliance. It was met, however, with hostility and attempts to stop/forbid the initiative.
There is no specific information for LGBTQI learners or guidance for the education sector on how to address bullying and harassment against LGBTQI students.
The government provides no support to civil society organisations working in the area of education.
– Latvia has not signed the Call for Action by Ministers – Inclusive and equitable education for all learners in an environment free from discrimination and violence.
– Latvia is not a member of the European Governmental LGBTI Focal Points Network.