SPoD LGBTI-Friendly Municipality Protocol

LGBTI activists meet for equality in municipalities

LGBTI activists from six cities met within the scope of SPoD’s Municipal Equality Index project, and discussed LGBTI politics in local administration.

Source: Umut Güven, “LGBTİ aktivistleri belediyelerde eşitlik için buluştu,” kaosGL.org, 23 January 2017, http://www.kaosgl.org/sayfa.php?id=22885

The activist stakeholders’ meeting within the scope of SPoD’s Municipal Equality Index project took place on Jan. 21 in Istanbul.

LGBTI organizations from six different cities met to discuss current municipal policies and goals.


Aim: Create visibility for municipal work

The project aims to make visible the work of LGBTI-friendly municipalities through the index, and encourage municipalities to be LGBTI-friendly in the long term. The advisory committee for the project met in December 2016.

The meeting began with a presentation by SPoD’s Academic Coordinator Neyir Zerey on the NGO’s activities in political representation and LGBTIs’ demands in Turkey.

The meeting continued with activists sharing experiences on relations with local administrations and the project they’d like establish.

Open Society Foundation’s Program Coordinator Didem Tekeli said the foundation is open to applications on realizing such local projects and may offer grants.

“Education within municipalities is a must”

The meeting ended with a discussion on index criteria for the project.

Besiktas Municipality Assembly Member Sedef Çakmak emphasized the importance of education within the municipal institution and said:

“Some municipalities may be hesitant to work on the LGBTI field. It would be incorrect to label this hesitancy as homophobia or transphobia. In order to combat this attitude that is rooted in a lack of information, education within the municipal institution is crucial.”

SPoD activists met with municipality employees the following day.


SPoD’s LGBTI-Friendly Municipality Protocol

Source: http://www.spod.org.tr/turkce/spodun-lgbt-dostu-belediyecilik-protokol-metnini-bugune-kadar-hdp-chp-ve-tkp-den-adaylar-imzaladi/

The Social Policies, Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation Studies Association (SPoD) submitted the LGBTI-Friendly Municipality Protocol to mayoral candidates in the upcoming local elections to remind local administrations of their responsibility to fulfill LGBTI rights.

The protocol text is as follows:

LGBTI-Friendly Municipality Protocol

I, the undersigned candidate for …. Mayor declare my commitment:

  • To take concrete steps to bring forth an egalitarian, libertarian, transparent and participatory local administration mentality and will work to protect and improve LGBTI people’s rights and freedoms,
  • To actualize policies that will allow LGBTI people to equally benefit from access to public services, the right to health care, the right to housing, the right to employment, and the right to transportation,
  • To consider these policies in budget preparations,
  • To cooperate with LGBTI associations and initiatives to ensure that city services are encompassing,
  • To draft regulations of non-discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity within the municipality,
  • To provide training to municipality employees on LGBTI rights and discrimination,
  • To be an LGBTI-friendly mayor.

This protocol text has been drafted by the Social Policies, Gender Identity and Sexual Orientation Studies Association (SPoD) to be presented to mayoral candidates and to remind them of their responsibility to fulfill LGBTI rights.

Mayoral candidates from the People’s Democratic Party (HDP), the Republican People’s Party (CHP), the Communist Party of Turkey (TKP) have signed the LGBTI-Friendly Municipality Protocol.

The list of candidates who have so far signed the protocol is as follows and the candidates who have won in the elections of 30 March 2014 are in bold:

BDP Mersin Akdeniz Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidate Yüksel Mutlu

BDP Mersin Yenişehir Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Saniye Ağbay and Hasan Kapıkıran

BDP Mersin Mezitli Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidate Muazzez Araç

BDP Mersin Toroslar Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidate Emine Kocadağ

HDP Adana Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidate Leyla Uyar

HDP Adana Çukurova Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Kamuran Çetinkaya and Fatma Şahin

HDP Adana Seyhan Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Ayhan Bilgen and Meliha Varışlı

HDP Adana Yüreğir Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidate Beyhan Günyeli

HDP Ankara Çankaya Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Mükremin Barut and Elçin Öz

HDP Balıkesir Ayvalık Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Piraye Bayman and Cemil Tosunoğlu

HDP Çanakkale Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Şeyhmus Aslan and Rahime Kanilga

HDP Eskişehir Metropolitan Municipality Mayoral Candidate Cemal Küçükbaş

HDP Eskişehir Odunpazarı Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates İzzettin Altun and Yıldız Karasu

HDP Istanbul Avcılar Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidate Zehra Şahin

HDP Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Mayoral Candidate Sırrı Süreyya Önder

HDP Istanbul Bakırköy Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Nivari Bakırcıoğlu and Vahit Genç

HDP Istanbul Beşiktaş Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Ahmet Saymadı and Sevda Bayramoğlu

HDP Istanbul Beyoğlu Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Seyhan Alma Ürek and Korhan Gümüş

HDP Istanbul Çekmeköy Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Azat Altun and Pakize Gürhan

HDP Istanbul Eyüp Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Halis Ertaş and Asya Ülker

HDP Istanbul Fatih Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Turhan Yıldırım and Menice Çelik

HDP Istanbul Kadıköy Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Mukaddes Çelik and İsmet Sadıkoğlu

HDP Istanbul Sancaktepe Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidate Engin Aras and Nahide Kılıç

HDP Istanbul Şişli Municipality Co-Mayoral Candidates Kenan Yenice and Ayşe Berktay

CHP Istanbul Beşiktaş Municipality Mayoral Candidate Murat Hazinedar

CHP Istanbul Kadıköy Municipality Mayoral Candidate Aykurt Nuhoğlu

CHP Istanbul Şişli Municipality Mayoral Candidate Hayri İnönü

TKP Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality Mayoral Candidate Aydemir Güler

TKP Sakarya Municipality Mayoral Candidate Eray Diriarın

DSP Mersin Municipality Mayoral Candidate  Emrah Küçükkapdan

DSP Mersin Yenişehir Municipality Mayoral Candidate  H. Okan Özlü

DSP Mezitli Municipality Mayoral Candidate Nazan Aktolun

SPoD invites all city and district mayoral candidates to sign the LGBTI-Friendly Municipality Protocal.

Contact: [email protected]

SPoD /Hayat Çelik