Amid cases of abuse and violence against gay refugees and migrants, support groups in Germany want to establish special shelters for them, NBC News reported Tuesday. There have been several incidents reported in the past year of discrimination and physical assaults against gay refugees, according to Germany's Lesbian and Gay Federation.
The federation cited that Berlin officials had identified 95 cases in Germany’s capital between August and December 2015, mainly in refugee homes. LGBT communities in Berlin, Nuremberg and other major cities are also reportedly planning to set up special shelters exclusively for gay and lesbian refugees.
"We have been alerted to a growing number of insults and violent acts against queer refugees, including cases of rape," Marcel de Groot, manager of Berlin's gay counseling center, Schwulenberatung, told NBC News.
Schwulenberatung cited that it has had to find emergency accommodation for up to 70 people, mostly gay men, in private Berlin homes due to fear of becoming victims of attacks.
Meanwhile, people living in asylum centers in the Netherlands are reportedly being given lessons about the Dutch LGBT community, the country’s education minister announced, Newsweek reported earlier this week.
“We should not be naive,” Education Minister Jet Bussemaker told the newspaper Trouw. “Refugees come from countries where gay rights are not a matter of course and where women’s rights are not always accepted.”
Late last year, Dutch authorities relocated five LGBT refugees out of an asylum center after they were spat on and attacked by other refugees. The ministry has reportedly planned to involve COC Netherland, a Dutch LGBT organization, in the project.
“While we are very happy about the initiative, more needs to be done to introduce harsh and accurate punishments when LGBT asylum seekers are abused,” COC spokesman Philip Tijsma told Newsweek.
The Austrian Interior Ministry also produced a "refugee guide" aimed providing basic guidelines and regulations for arriving refugees, including a cartoon explaining that "same-sex partnerships are allowed in Austria. Women may live together with women and men with men," NBC News reported.
As hundreds of thousands of refugees continue to flee war-torn regions such as Iraq and Syria, European countries have experienced the largest burden. More than a million migrants and refugees crossed into Europe in 2015, and Germany has received the highest number of asylum applications, topping 315,000 by the end of October, BBC reported last month. Many have fled places where Islamic State militants are targeting or killing homosexuals.