EU Policy on Equality between Homo- and Heterosexuals and Citizens’ Attitudes toward Homosexuality in 26 EU Member States and Turkey

Jürgen Gerhards

Berliner Studien zur Soziologie Europas Nr. 8 | März 2007 | Download als PDF


The article first describes how the principle of non-discrimination of homosexuals is anchored in EU legislation and influences concrete policies of the European Union. The second section gives an analysis of the extent to which citizens of 26 EU Member States and Turkey support the idea of nondiscrimination of homosexuals. The descriptive findings show that the idea of non-discrimination is not supported by the majority of the European citizens, and that there are substantial differences be-tween the countries. A sense that homosexuality is justifiable is particularly low in recently-acceded country groups, and is almost nonexistent in Turkey. In the third section, we explain these differences by referring, among other factors, to the level of modernization of a country, the value orientation of the respondent, the level of edu-cation and the religious orientation of the respondent. The results show, that a high level of modernization, the interviewee’s level of education, and post-materialist val-ues have the strongest impact on non-discrimination attitudes. One may therefore conclude that support for non-discrimination toward homosexuals will increase if new member states go through a period of modernization similar to that of th old member states.

Soziologie - Euiropäische Gesellschaften