LGBT rights in Greenland
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) rights in Greenland are similar to those in Denmark. Same-sex sexual activity is legal, with an equal age of consent, and there are some anti-discrimination laws protecting LGBT people. Same-sex couples have had access to registered partnerships, which provided them with nearly all of the rights provided to married opposite-sex couples from 1996 to 2016. On 1 April 2016, a law repealing the registered partnership law and allowing for same-sex marriages to be performed came into effect.
Location of Greenland
|Status||Legal since 1933,|
age of consent equalized in 1977 (Danish law)
|Gender identity||No current laws|
|Military||LGBT people allowed to serve openly (the unified armed forces of the Kingdom of Denmark responsible)|
|Discrimination protections||Some sexual orientation protections (see below)|
|Recognition of relationships||Same-sex marriage since 2016|
|Adoption||Full adoption rights since 2016|
In 1979, Denmark granted Greenland autonomy under the Home Rule Act and in 2009 extended self-government, although it still influences the island's culture and politics. Greenland is considered to be very socially liberal towards LGBT people. Acceptance of homosexuality and same-sex relationships is very high, and reports of discrimination against LGBT people are extremely rare. Nonetheless, due to Greenland's small and scattered population, a lot of Greenlandic LGBT people have chosen to move to Copenhagen in Denmark.
Law regarding same-sex sexual activityEdit
Recognition of same-sex relationshipsEdit
Greenland adopted Denmark's registered partnership law on 1 July 1996. There was some opposition to registered partnerships from clergy and conservative lawmakers, who later chose to abstain from voting. The bill was passed in the Greenlandic Parliament 15-0 with 12 abstentions, and later by the Danish Parliament 104-1. The first same-sex couple to register did so in 2002. Registered partnerships are called nalunaarsukkamik inooqatigiinneq in Greenlandic.
In March 2015, MP Justus Hansen, from the Democrats, a centre-right political party, introduced a bill to legalise same-sex marriage in Greenland, which also included adoption rights and other changes to Greenlandic family law. The bill was approved unanimously (27-0) by the Parliament of Greenland on 26 May 2015, but required Danish approval before coming into effect. Initially, the bill was to come into effect on 1 October 2015, but lapsed due to the Danish general elections in June 2015. The parliamentary procedure therefore had to start over and the new Danish Liberal Government put an identical bill on the agenda for its first reading on 5 November 2015. On 19 January 2016, the Folketing (Danish Parliament) approved the proposal 108-0 and the bill was given royal assent by Queen Margrethe II on 3 February 2016. The parts of the law relating to marriage went into effect on 1 April 2016.
Adoption and family planningEdit
On 1 June 2009, stepchild adoption for same-sex couples became legal. A law regarding IVF for female couples was approved in 2006. The parts of the same-sex marriage law allowing same-sex couples to adopt children went into effect on 1 July 2016.
Since 2010, Greenland has outlawed hate speech and hate crimes on the basis of sexual orientation. Article 100 of the Criminal Code prohibits speech which may deprive, threaten or demean individuals on the basis of their sexual orientation, among other categories.
Greenland possesses no anti-discrimination laws in employment, goods and services, health services or education. Danish anti-discrimination laws do not apply to Greenland. Greenland's only anti-discrimination law is Act no. 7 of April 11, 2003 on equality between women and men (Greenlandic: Arnat angutillu naligiissitaanissaat pillugu Inatsisartut inatsisaat nr. 7, 11. april 2003-meersoq; Danish: Landstingslov nr. 7 af 11 april 2003 om ligestilling af kvinder og mænd) which bans gender-based discrimination only.
The Human Rights Council of Greenland, funded by the state budget, promotes and protects human rights in Greenland. It is commissioned to participate in the strengthening and consolidation of human rights, and works closely with the Danish Institute for Human Rights.
Other than taking a case to court or referring to the Greenlandic Ombudsman, no national complaints procedure exists in which one can bring forth legal complaints of discrimination.
Nevertheless, reports of discrimination based on sexual orientation are very rare.
LGBT rights movement in GreenlandEdit
|Same-sex sexual activity legal||(Since 1933)|
|Equal age of consent||(Since 1977)|
|Anti-discrimination laws in employment|
|Anti-discrimination laws in the provision of goods and services|
|Anti-discrimination laws in all other areas (incl. indirect discrimination, hate speech)||(Since 2010)|
|Anti-discrimination laws concerning gender identity|
|Same-sex marriage(s)||(Since 2016)|
|Recognition of same-sex couples||(Since 1996)|
|Stepchild adoption by same-sex couples||(Since 2009)|
|Joint adoption by same-sex couples||(Since 2016)|
|LGBT people allowed to serve in the military||(Since 1978; the unified armed forces of the Kingdom of Denmark responsible)|
|Right to change legal gender|
|Access to IVF for lesbians||(Since 2006)|
|Commercial surrogacy for gay male couples||(Illegal for heterosexual couples also)|
|MSMs allowed to donate blood|
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