GSA: Vote and elect the ones to whom it matters

With the upcoming presidential, parliamentary, regional and local elections to be held on Sunday, 6 May 2012, Gay Straight Alliance (GSA; Alliance) invites all lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people with the right to vote in Serbia and diaspora, as well as their friends, relatives and other citizens, to vote in great numbers and elect those political options to which LGBT rights, and human rights as a whole, matter.

Even though human rights of LGBT people in Serbia have not yet reached a requisite level and there is still a lot of work to be done regarding tolerance and inclusion of this population, and even though we have been dissatisfied with some politics and certain actions by probably all political options that are taking part in this election race, GSA still feels that LGBT people have who to vote for at these elections.

GSA will not endorse any political party specifically, but wishes to emphasise that the elections are a place where there is no discrimination and where each vote is worth as much as any other, which is why this is an important democratic mechanism that LGBT people should use to the maximum, by supporting those political options that want to and can contribute in the next mandate of the Government, Parliament and Local Self-government to the improvement of this population’s status.

GSA invites LGBT people to consider while voting economic programmes and other measures that the parties proposed in their campaigns, but most importantly to vote for themselves, i.e. to give their vote to those who deserve it and who have shown that all citizens matter to them, regardless of their differences.

After the announcement of the elections, the Alliance started the campaign „It matters!“ which aimed to have the election candidates express their positions on the issues concerning LGBT human rights. GSA was pleased that the pro-European part of the political parties more seriously than before realised the potential of the LGBT voters, spoke to the LGBT population and positioned themselves towards the problems that this population faces. It is up to us to remind them to realise the promises they have made after the elections.

GSA has systematized the greatest portion of what the parties said about LGBT rights in their campaigns, through questionnaires, answering questions, in media, and similar – and this can be found on GSA’s website under the column IZBORI 2012 (ELECTIONS 2012) in order to help LGBT people and other citizens gain better perspective while deciding who to vote for.

Here you can find the list of candidates taking part in parliamentary elections and the list of presidential candidates, as well as what those candidates said about LGBT rights in their campaigns.

As regards the campaign „It matters!“ and statistics, the greatest attention and interest were certainly given to the replies in questionnaires by presidential candidates, and this trend corresponds to the campaigns in general elections where presidential campaigns are the key. Most „shares“ and „likes“ on GSA’s website has the candidate of „Preokret“ Čedomir Jovanović, and then the presidential candidates from „Izbor za bolji život“ and coalition SPS-JS-PUPS, Boris Tadić and Ivica Dačić. As far as website views are concerned, the situation is somewhat different – most views were noted when the reply of Ivica Dačić was published, and then Boris Tadić and Čedomir Jovanović.

GSA also had two polls on its website related to the elections, one that asked about election turnout and the other about perception of political parties in the context of supporting LGBT rights. Even though voting in the polls was limited (the polls were set so that there could be only one vote per computer) a lot of visitors took part in them.

According to these polls, the majority of the visitors of the site are going to vote. Out of 420, 69% are going to vote, 23% are not, while 8% still have not decided.

At the question: „to whom do LGBT rights and reducing violence and discrimination matter?“ 692 visitors who answered, chose the following 5 parties/coalitions at the top of all other tickets that are taking part in the parliamentary elections:


GSA was also pleased that in the pre-election campaigns there was no great amount of hate speech directed at the LGBT population, except the movement Dveri, who once again, just as they have done in the past few years, tried in this manner to get cheap political points and create conflict with those who advocate for LGBT rights. They have failed in this, but it could certainly be an additional motive for LGBT people to vote in greater numbers and thus diminish Dveri’s chances of entering the parliament.

GSA Info Centre