LGBT Life & Retirement in Italy

  • LGBT Life & Retirement in Italy

    Posted by Mark Goldstein on September 2, 2020 at 3:47 PM

    Italy has made significant strides in rights and recognition, though the LGBT community still face some legal challenges in Italy. In June 2016, a bill was passed granting and recognizing civil unions with accompanying rights to shared property, pensions, and inheritance. Adoption rights have not yet been granted, though some court precedents have been established on a case-by-case basis.

    Same-sex activity has been legal in Italy since 1890. In 1982, Italy became the third country in the world to recognize one’s right to change gender. Gay people are not banned from military service and cannot be denied the right to serve, which is a constitutional right. In 2003, laws were established banning discrimination in the workplace based on sexual orientation, in conformity with EU directives.

    Public opinion has become increasingly liberal, with a 2016 poll showing a strong majority, 69%, favor same-sex civil unions. Some parts of the country, especially rural areas, are still quite conservative in terms of how members of the LGBT community are viewed. However, many provincial cities are increasingly gay-friendly, listed as “città arcobaleno” or rainbow cities, meaning they are not just accepting, but inclusive with social services and initiatives, a network of support, and cultural, work, and leisure opportunities. Aside from Rome and Milan, such cities include Naples, Catania, Bari, Bologna, Padova, Gallipoli, and Palermo. The first retirement home facilities geared towards gays have opened in Rome and Bologna.

    The largest pride parade is held annually in Rome, with large marches called Onda Pride (wave of pride) in Milan and Torino. Perhaps more significant to the wave of change and attitude, though, are the number of pride parades being held in provincial cities throughout the country with a good turnout and increased awareness at the local level.

    Rome, Milan, and Bologna are perhaps the most open and gay-friendly cities. In Rome there is the area called Gay Street, around St. John Lateran (Via San Giovanni in Laterano) and Via Labicana, the area east of the colosseum, as well as the Testaccio and Monti districts.

    Bologna, known as a very open and liberal, is accepting and embracing. It is also the headquarters of ArciGay, the largest LGBT organization in Italy. In general, there is a greater openness and social acceptance in the larger cities of the north. However, the city of Bari in Puglia has become one of the nation’s most popular for civil union celebrations, with reception halls and restaurants enthusiastically catering to LGBT clientele.

    While some LGBT residents report hostile comments directed toward them, others say they’ve been fully accepted by their neighbors. Because of Italy’s sociable nature and the tendency for friends to stroll arm-in-arm together, many gay couples say they can walk hand-in-hand without a second glance.

    Mark Goldstein replied 3 years, 8 months ago 1 Member · 0 Replies
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