© Petra-Gijzen

LGBT+ Politics and Representation

The year 2021 marks a milestone for the representation of LGBT+ people in Dutch politics, as the first trans woman was elected into parliament. This evening, academics, politicians and activists from the US and the Netherlands draw lessons from a trans-Atlantic comparison of LGBT+ rights and representation, discuss the challenges of cracking the LGBT+ glass ceiling, and formulate strategies towards more inclusive politics.

This is an online event

The presence of ‘out’ elected officials in politics worldwide is increasing and LGBT+ people are holding their nation’s highest offices, while advocating for issues that go far beyond sexuality and gender identity. However, increased political visibility is often accompanied by increased backlash, as LGBT+ politicians are faced with misogyny, homophobia and transphobia. What challenges do LGBT+ politicians face and what factors facilitate or hinder LGBT+ visibility in politics? Comparing and contrasting the Netherlands with the debate in the United States can locate these struggles for representation of LGBT+ rights in a global frame.

This event takes place in the context of the visiting scholarship of Prof. Andrew Reynolds (Princeton University) and is organized by the Amsterdam Center for European Studies (ACES) in the Diverse Europe theme group at the University of Amsterdam.

About the speakers

Lisa van Ginneken is a member of the Dutch Parliament for the social liberal party Democrats 66 (D66). In 2021, she became the first trans woman in the Netherlands to be elected into the House of Representatives, with a portfolio on government digitalization, privacy, personal and family law and identity.

Katie Hill is a former member of the United States House of Representatives and one of the first openly bisexual members of US Congress.

Sarah McBride is a United States State Senator in Delaware and the highest ranking transgender elected official. McBride is largely credited with the passage of legislation in Delaware banning discrimination on the basis of gender identity.

Andrew Reynolds is a faculty member in the School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University and a Professor of Political Science (on leave) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Reynolds is one of the leading scholars on LGBT+ representation in the world. His latest book The Children of Harvey Milk: How LGBTQ Politicians Changed the World has been lauded as a groundbreaking study of the impact of out queer elected officials.

vreer verkerke is dual-councilor for BIJ1 in the Amsterdam city council, until recently board member of Transgender Europe (TGEU) and founder of trans activist collective for trans* health care Principle 17.

Tofik Dibi (moderator) is a former member of the Dutch Parliament for the Green Party and author of Djinn, a coming-out memoir of marginalization and embracing his sexual orientation as queer and his Muslim identity.

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