The Equal Opportunities Unit of the City of Brussels fights against discriminations of: the LGBT+ community, persons with disabilities, women and Brussels of foreign origin. It also gives subsidies to associations in the field of equal opportunities.
In Belgium it is illegal to discriminate a person because of his or her sexual orientation. In June 2003, Belgium became the 2nd country of the world, after the Netherlands, to authorize the marriage between homosexuals. Since 2004, the homosexual marriage is also allowed between a Belgian and a person of foreign origin.
The City of Brussels supports the Rainbow House, a house open to every lesbian, bisexual and gay Brussels. The City of Brussels works in association with the lesbian, bisexual and gay community to set up a 'lesbian, bisexual and gay policy' for the City of Brussels.
Since 2001, the City of Brussels supports actively the Pride Festival. During this festival, several activities are organized by various associations on the subject of the homosexuality.
Together with the Rainbow House, the Police and the Centre for Equal Opportunities, the City of Brussels wants to end violence towards homosexuals, lesbians and bisexuals. This is done via an informative leaflet, by informing and training policemen, by working with the local youth clubs,...
World AIDS Day
Furthermore, the City of Brussels participates annually in the International Day of Fight against AIDS (1 December), in association with the Platform for AIDS Prevention.
"Refuge Bruxelles" provides temporary accommodation and comprehensive care (social, legal, administrative and medical) to LGBT+ youth rejected by their families. This service targets young people aged 18 to 25 in the Brussels Region:
Brussels wants to be a society with equal chances for women as well. The City of Brussels acts against the discrimination against women at 3 levels: by assuring the equality of opportunity within its staff, by collaborating with associations, by organizing events.
Within the staff of the City
The City of Brussels decided to take measures within its own administration in order to give women the same chances:
- A reliable person indicated to collect the complaints of harassment and sexual intimidation
- A person working within the HR department is asked to reveal measures hurting women
- The system of promotion was revised to avoid obligations susceptible to hurt women (an evening class for example)
- Juries consist of women and men
The City works in association with feminine associations. They can obtain subsidies to organize actions on the Brussels territory.
The City of Brussels organizes the Women's Week. This event aims at informing the population of the various forms of violence against women, at making people sensitive and at bringing everybody to think about the actions to be led locally against this discrimination.
The City of Brussels tries to create the necessary conditions for all Brussels, whether they are Belgian or foreign, to have equal access to their rights and to all public services.
Many people of foreign origin live in Brussels. These foreigners have their own advisory council:
Each year, a call for projects is launched to the Brussels associations. The projects should focus on raising awareness. The forms aimed at asking subsidies are sent to the associations and published on this website. They are also available at the Equal Opportunities Unit, which remains available for any additional information.