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13 May 2022

LGBT+ persons with ethnic minority background: living conditions and need for support, Denmark

LGBT+ persons ethnic minority DK cover

This report by ALS Research - funded by the Danish Agency for International Recruitment and Integration (SIRI) - finds that overall, LGBT+ people with ethnic minority background (defined within the report as those who are 'first and second-generation migrants or refugees from non-Western countries') are a very vulnerable group in Denmark. Their living conditions are significantly poorer than those of other LGBT+ people living in the country.

The report's findings align with a previous report from 2015, implying that no action has been taken to improve conditions for LGBT+ people with ethnic minority background since then. These findings include the following:

  • 55% of respondents have felt discriminated against within the last year due to their ethnic / religious background or their sexual orientation / gender identity, while 45% have felt discriminated against because of both.
  • Mental health in the target group is at low levels, and loneliness is widespread: 44% of respondents are at risk of depression or permanent stress, 33% are lonely to a problematic degree, and 59% grew up in an environment where they experienced psychological violence.
  • 34% of respondents have considered suicide within the last year (along with 25% of other LGBT+ persons in Denmark, and 7 - 8% of the general population).
  • 27% of respondents have been forced to find alternative accommodation during their lifetime in Denmark due to their sexual orientation / gender identity, with 7% in this situation currently.

The report also includes a number of recommendations from the interviewees and from professionals working with the target group. One of the stress factors mentioned by many is the fact that even though they were born and raised in Denmark, they have been unable to secure Danish citizenship as they cannot meet the criteria for work and income. They fear they will be deported to a "home country" where they will be in danger due to their sexual orientation or gender identity.

The most common countries of origin among the respondents are Turkey (14%), Pakistan (10%), Lebanon (7%), Iraq (6%) and Syria (6%). This is representative of the general make-up of non-Western immigrants in Denmark.

Data for the report was gathered via questionnaires answered by 1 200 respondents and qualitative interviews with 30 people, carried out between August 2021 - February 2022. A number of civil society organisations and professionals also participated.

LGBT+ persons with ethnic minority background: living conditions and need for support, Denmark
(1.64 MB - PDF)


Bjarke Følner, Anne Heiberg Goor, Anne-Mette Hansen
Geographic area
Contributor type
Academics and experts
National governmental actor
Non-Governmental Organisations/Civil Society
Original source
Posted by
Michala Clante Bendixen
Country Coordinator

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