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Germany

Knowledge Network for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex People (DE0010)

Overview

At-a-Glance

Action Plan: Germany National Action Plan 2017-2019

Action Plan Cycle: 2017

Status: Inactive

Institutions

Lead Institution: Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (BMFSFJ)

Support Institution(s): External partners for planning the content (previous consultation of civil society, implementation by external agency)

Policy Areas

E-Government, Gender, Marginalized Communities

IRM Review

IRM Report: Germany Design Report 2017-2019

Starred: Pending IRM Review

Early Results: Pending IRM Review

Design i

Verifiable: Yes

Relevant to OGP Values: Access to Information

Potential Impact:

Implementation i

Completion:

Description

Description: The online information portal will provide interested citizens, experts as well as persons concerned and their families with information about gender diversity and same-sex ways of life. The portal will also be accompanied by public relations activities. By providing efficient access, the overall project will have a strong social impact and contribute to further awareness-raising in society in order to promote acceptance of LGBTI people (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people). Aim: The Federal Government’s aim is to provide persons concerned, their families and the public with information (here the LGBTI knowledge network) about existing legal provisions and about where to find advice and further support. It also seeks to increase acceptance, use the possibilities of new technologies, raise awareness, improve the quality of data on research and social questions concerning gender identity and samesex ways of life, encourage participation and involve NGOs. Status quo: LGBTI people still face discrimination in our society. Federal states and individual municipalities promote advisory and support services for LGBTI people. Especially in rural and sparsely populated areas, services are not always available. Ambition: Improving data for the general public and experts, in particular on gender identity. Fulfilling the requirement of the United Nations CEDAW (Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women) Committee to pay greater attention to the situation of transgender and intersex people as well as the obligation under the Coalition Agreement to focus on the special situation of transgender and intersex people and to raise public awareness of the issue. New or ongoing: new Implemented by: Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (BMFSFJ) Organizations involved in implementation: External partners for planning the content (previous consultation of civil society, implementation by external agency) Organizational unit and contact: Division 215, Ina-Marie Blomeyer, referat215@bmfsfj.bund.de Open government values addressed: Participation, transparency, technology/innovation Relevance: Promoting acceptance, providing access to information for LGBTI people, their families and the general public, recommending available expert advisory structures (i.e. providing information on where to find which advisory services), using an online information portal (knowledge network)

IRM Midterm Status Summary

10. Knowledge Network for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex people

Language of the commitment as it appears in the action plan:

“The online information portal will provide interested citizens, experts as well as persons concerned and their families with information about gender diversity and same-sex ways of life. The portal will also be accompanied by public relations activities. By providing efficient access, the overall project will have a strong social impact and contribute to further awareness-raising in society in order to promote acceptance of LGBTI people (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people).

“Aim: The Federal Government’s aim is to provide persons concerned, their families and the public with information (here the LGBTI knowledge network) about existing legal provisions and about where to find advice and further support. It also seeks to increase acceptance, use the possibilities of new technologies, raise awareness, improve the quality of data on research and social questions concerning gender identity and samesex ways of life, encourage participation and involve NGOs.”

Milestones:

10.1 Deploying the information portal with initial topics TI (= trans*, inter)

10.2 Adding information on LSB (= lesbian, gay, bi) topics

10.3 Uploading all basic and background information on the portal, continuously updating the content, recommending local advisory services through an advisory database

Start Date: July 2017

End Date: December 2020

Context and Objectives

According to the status quo described in the action plan, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) people “still face discrimination in our society” and related support information and services “are not always available . . . [e]specially in rural and sparsely populated areas.” [40]

Currently, official information for the LGBTI community on their rights, entitlements, and support services is fragmented. This fragmentation has a geographic dimension, with available information varying significantly across German states (North Rhine-Westphalia being one of the better examples: https://www.mkffi.nrw/lsbti). The fragmentation also has a thematic dimension, with information tailored to transgender and intersex people being even less available. [41]

The commitment seeks to “provide persons concerned, their families and the public with information (here the LGBTI knowledge network) about existing legal provisions and about where to find advice and further support. It also seeks to increase acceptance, use the possibilities of new technologies, raise awareness, improve the quality of data on research and social questions concerning gender identity and same-sex ways of life, encourage participation and involve NGOs.” [42] The commitment aims to do this through the deployment of an online information portal of LGBTI topics, particularly gender identity and available support services. [43] Consequently, it is relevant to the OGP value of access to information.

Targeting specific beneficiary groups for open government efforts can be important for addressing priorities that align with practical needs and for achieving the necessary traction, uptake, and sustainability in related efforts. Such targeting is even more relevant if it is geared toward segments of the population that face discrimination and are at risk of falling through the cracks of existing outreach and engagement efforts. As a result, tailoring a commitment to the LGBTI community can be considered an important step toward more inclusive government and governance.

The commitment is verifiable, but some activities lack specificity. For example, it is not clear what qualifies as basic information to be included on the portal. The commitment also does not make clear how deploying the information portal and populating it with LGBTI topics constitutes action beyond consolidating existing information in a more accessible manner. Given its general potential, however, to make relevant information more accessible and actionable—and thus contribute to the inclusion of a particularly marginalized community—the potential impact is rated as minor.

Next steps

The IRM researcher recommends retaining the intent of this commitment because it involves tailoring a commitment to a community at risk of discrimination and exclusion. However, the IRM researcher recommends rethinking the commitment’s formulation to increase access to this information or citizen participation in identifying the information needs of this community. If this is done successfully, such a commitment could underscore Germany’s broader ambition to take a leadership role in the open government space. The commitment could serve as an important and inspiring example for action plans in other countries, since LGBTI discrimination is a global concern.

More concretely, a new commitment could include actions that help assess, monitor, and transparently track the scale and scope of discrimination. A new commitment could also provide targeted mechanisms for engaging LGBTI stakeholders in co-creating related information, services and policies. Another goal would be to strengthen the visibility and accessibility of targeted accountability mechanisms, such as dedicated feedback and complaint channels to report and remedy discrimination. These accountability mechanisms could also include information on the performance of state authorities in responding to discrimination claims or data on the scale and scope of public sector training activities on related issues.

[40] Federal Government of Germany, First National Action Plan 2017–2019, 23, https://www.opengovpartnership.org/documents/germany-action-plan-2019-2021/.

[41] See Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth, Situation von Trans- und Intersexuellen Menschen im Fokus. [Situation of Trans- and Intersexual People in Focus], 2016, 23, https://www.bmfsfj.de/blob/112092/f199e9c4b77f89d0a5aa825228384e08/imag-band-5-situation-von-trans-und-intersexuellen-menschen-data.pdf.

[42] Ibid.

[43] The updated project name of the portal is Regenbogenportal (rainbow portal).


Commitments

  1. Participatory development of research and innovation policy

    DE0022, 2019, Public Participation

  2. Participatory creation of regulatory policy

    DE0023, 2019, Public Participation

  3. Digital strategy pilot for rural regions

    DE0024, 2019, Public Service Delivery

  4. Open government in North Rhine-Westphalia

    DE0025, 2019, E-Government

  5. Policy co-creation in North Rhine-Westphalia

    DE0026, 2019, Land & Spatial Planning

  6. Data sovereignty in North Rhine-Westphalia

    DE0027, 2019, E-Government

  7. Open government portal in Saxony

    DE0028, 2019, Civic Space

  8. Open-source software in public administrations in Schleswig-Holstein

    DE0029, 2019, Subnational

  9. Regional Open Government Labs

    DE0016, 2019, OGP

  10. Civil Society Consulation on Foreign Policy

    DE0017, 2019,

  11. Create youth strategy

    DE0018, 2019, Marginalized Communities

  12. Craete federal agency for digital innovation

    DE0019, 2019,

  13. Transparency and participation in international aid

    DE0020, 2019,

  14. Strengthen and socialize open data policy

    DE0021, 2019, Open Data

  15. Conditions for OGP Participation

    DE0001, 2017, OGP

  16. Open Data in Administrative Practice

    DE0002, 2017, Capacity Building

  17. Open Data Environment

    DE0003, 2017, Capacity Building

  18. Access to Spatial Data

    DE0004, 2017, Capacity Building

  19. Financial Transparency - EITI Standard

    DE0005, 2017, E-Government

  20. Transparency in Development Policy

    DE0006, 2017, Aid

  21. Open Data for Intelligent Mobility

    DE0007, 2017, E-Government

  22. Citizen Participation in Environmental Policy and Urban Development

    DE0008, 2017, Capacity Building

  23. Electronic Procedures for Family Benefits

    DE0009, 2017, E-Government

  24. Knowledge Network for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex People

    DE0010, 2017, E-Government

  25. Local Alliances for Family Initiative

    DE0011, 2017, Public Participation

  26. Share of Women and Men in Leadership Positions, Private and Private Sectors

    DE0012, 2017, E-Government

  27. Open Access to Academic Literature

    DE0013, 2017, E-Government

  28. Science Year 2018

    DE0014, 2017, Public Participation

  29. Federal Competition “Living Together Hand in Hand”

    DE0015, 2017, Citizenship and Immigration