Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people of non-Western descent living in Denmark have more psychological problems than their Danish counterparts, according to an extensive survey carried out by the Ministry for Children, Education and Gender Equality.
One in three non-ethnic Danes who are homosexual say they have considered committing suicide in the past year, while the same applies to every fifth Dane from the LGBT community.
Similarly, every seventh LGBT person whose parents are not native Danes admit they have been violently attacked by their parents due to their sexuality.
Only one in 100 in the ethnic-Dane group said they had experienced violence from their parents.
The education and gender equality minister, Ellen Trane Nørby, calls the situation “troubling” and “unacceptable”.
Living a double life
According to Sabaah, an association for LGBT people with a different ethnic background to Danish, only a few of their 700 members have told their families about their sexuality or gender identity.
“Prejudice and stigmatisation against LGBT people in minority ethnic communities make many people feel forced to live a double life. There are very few we are in contact with who feel they can live an open and authentic life,” Fahad Saeed, the head of Sabaah, told Politiken.
The respondents who experience the most difficulties tend to come from families in which honour and religion are highly valued.
According to Saeed, who is himself gay and Muslim, it is the strict norms and high expectations to live ‘the right life’ that are causing conflicts.