LGBT+ Business Climate Score

Out Leadership’s snapshot of the current state of affairs for LGBT+ people, through the lens of international business. The Business Climate Score score is out of ten possible points, and is based on ten independently verifiable indicators of the legal, cultural and business context for LGBT+ people.

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1.
Are consensual homosexual acts between adults legal?
1
Yes
2.
Are marriage or civil unions for same-sex couples available?
1
Yes
3.
Is being LGBT+ punishable by death?
1
No
4.
Are sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination in employment prohibited?
0.5
Yes, discrimination on basis of orientation is prohibited
5.
Can transgender people legally change their gender markers?
1
Yes
6.
Is sex reassignment surgery at birth for intersex children prohibited?
0
No
7.
Are sexual orientation and gender identity discrimination in the provision of goods and services prohibited?
0.5
Yes, discrimination on basis of orientation is prohibited
8.
Is there a U.S. State Department warning against travel for LGBT+ individuals?
1
No
9.
Do companies sponsor Pride?
1
Yes
10.
Are there laws prohibiting freedom for assembly or speech for LGBT+ people (i.e. “anti-propoganda laws”, media gags, etc)?
1
No
Talking Points
  • Tourism accounts for about 10% of Italy’s GDP, and LGBT+ tourism is a $200 billion annual market. It would behoove Italian lawmakers to help ensure that LGBT+ travelers feel comfortable here.
  • Though a majority of Italians support LGBT+ rights, there were still 104 homophobic incidents reported between March 2015 and 2016, according to Arcigay. The real number is undoubtedly higher. Though it’s great that Italy’s anti-discrimination laws include outlawing violence against LGBT+ people, Italy must also make it possible to consider sexual orientation in hate crime prosecutions.
  • Recent surveys put Italy’s LGBT+ population at between 4 and 6% of the overall population. Legalizing full gay marriage and outlawing anti-LGBT+ hate crimes would allow 2.4 to 3.6 million people to more fully participate in Italy’s social, political, and economic life.
  • More than 70% of Italians believe that LGBT+ people should have full equality. Changing laws that prohibit same-sex couples from adopting children and limit in vitro fertilization to heterosexual couples would be consistent with the arc of popular opinion.
Talking Points
Impact of LGBT Discrimination on Business and Talent
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    NO RISK
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    LOW RISK
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    MODERATE RISK
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    NOTABLE RISK
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    HIGH RISK
BRAND RISK
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    LOW RISK
In terms of supporting LGBT+ rights, there is little brand risk to operating in Italy. Though portions of the population adhere to conservative Catholicism, the majority of Italians support LGBT+ equality.
CLIENT RISK
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    NO RISK
There is little to no client risk to operating in Italy, which does not have a homophobic reputation, despite being the last country in Western Europe to legalize same-sex unions.
TALENT RISK
  • 2
    LOW RISK
Gay and lesbian people cannot get married in Italy, but many big-city mayors exploit a loophole in Italian law and recognize same-sex marriages performed abroad. Italy also recognizes civil unions. There is little risk overall that LGBT+ talent would be penalized by relocating to Italy.
MARKETING RISK
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    LOW RISK
Global corporations already regularly sponsor Italian gay pride parades. Though many Italians still adhere to traditional Catholic dogma, which can include opposing same-sex relationships, there is little risk to marketing to LGBT+ customers in Italy.
Socio-cultural Environment of LGBT People:

Status of LGBT+ Organizing and Community

  • — There are several annual pride parades in cities across Italy. The 2018 pride in Rome attracted 500,000 people.
  • — The Catholic Church still holds strong sway in Italy, bringing with it entrenched homophobia. In March 2017, the LGBT+ group Arcigay refused to reveal publicly what schools in Genoa were participating in a gender studies program for fear of homophobic backlash.
  • — In the 2017 Rainbow Europe report, Italy ranked 32 out of 49 countries having scored just 27 per cent for its protection of LGBT rights.

Cultural Views of the LGBT+ Community

  • — In January 2016, thousands of Italians attended a rally at the ancient Roman arena Circus Maximus to protest a proposal to legalize same-sex civil unions. The protest was unsuccessful – the law passed four months later.
  • — Surveys in 2015 show that more than 70% of Italians believe LGBT+ people in Italy suffer from discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. But 72% also agreed that LGBT+ Italians should have equal rights with everyone else.
  • — In May 2015, Felice Belloli, who was then the head of Italy’s amateur football association, allegedly used “lesbians” as an insult when referring to women’s soccer. He was fired for the remarks.
Local Leaders Advocating for LGBT Equality

There are many openly LGBT + activists and experts in India. Out Leadership recommends:

Federico Sassoli, Arcigay National Office