EU won’t cancel visas without SOGI corrections in new Labour Code – opinion

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European commission rescheduled publication of the report about Kyiv executing the plan of visa regime liberalization.

European Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn told before that the report would be made public on December 15 and it would contain positive recommendation for Ukraine. But on December 15 Ukrainian Ministry for Internal Affairs speaker Maryana Betsa stated that the date of the report publication would be announced after the evaluation of Ukraine’s executing the second stage of the plan of visa regime liberalization.

There is an opinion that publication of the report is postponed because of non-compliance of the amendments to the law on National Agency of Recovery and Management of Illegally Moved out Assets.

Numerous Ukrainian editions cited the words of Hromadske TV journalist Maksym Scherbyna who blogged on his Facebook page that Ukraine shouldn’t expect an easy ride. “The report will be made public till the end of the year, but not in the light version that has leaked to the Internet last week and has been so gladly reposted.”

As explained by the journalist, relying on preliminary information and “various insiders”, the commission wanted to give Ukraine visa-free regime “at a discount”, on the ground of relative progress in fighting corruption. But he writes that now we “will have complete package” and names things obligatory for Ukraine to get its visa-free regime.

Introducing non-discrimination clause that protects LGBT to the new Labour Code is mentioned first. “The amendment that we fought so hard in spring was adopted to the old Code. Europe is right to suspect that there is a chance not to see it in new Labour Code that is likely to be adopted in the first quarter of 2016.”

Read also: I am gay in Ukraine and my country despises me (ru)

This problem was many times mentioned by us, by other human rights advocates, Maksym Eristavi, one of the founders of Hromadske TV, also wrote about it in his abovementioned article. In particular, he mentioned that this law on ban of discrimination in employment was thrown to him as a bone to a dog. “The amendment they passed is temporary: It is an equality clause to a labor code effective since Soviet times. A new code is on its way to a second, final reading and doesn’t include any mention of LGBTI rights. The technicality creates a temporary alley for Ukraine to fulfill visa-free demands, without granting any equality in the long run.”

Автор: Sofa Hadashot

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