1998 in LGBT Rights

In 1998, there were 43 recorded legal changes made affecting LGBT people. In the previous year, there were 20 changes made and 21 in the following year. A total of 260 legal changes were made in the 1990s.

  • December 24
    Blood donations by MSMs becomes banned (indefinite deferral).
  • December 23
    Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    Homosexual activity is legal in Chile.
  • November 24
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
  • November 23
    Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    Powell v. The State, Supreme Court of Georgia (1998).
  • October 9
    Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    While it remained illegal until the court gave its ruling on 9 October 1998, the 1998 ruling was ordered to be retroactively applied to 27 April 1994.
  • September 26
    Blood donations by MSMs becomes banned (indefinite deferral).
  • September 1
    Homosexual activity becomes legal.
  • August 20
    Equal age of consent becomes equal.
    In 1998, Malta's age of consent became equalized at 18.
  • July 1
    Homosexual activity becomes illegal (imprisonment as punishment).
    Mandatory minimum of 20 years imprisonment for any attempt to commit acts "against the order of nature."
  • June 5
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    In the 1998 constitution, article 23.3 extended discrimination protection to sexual orientations. In its 2008 constitution included gender identity in its protection in article 11.2
  • May 21
    Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    Homosexuality legalised following the European Court of Human Rights case of Modinos v. Cyprus.
  • May 20
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    General law on HIV/AIDS protects LGBT people from discrimination in some contexts.
  • May 8
    Homosexuals serving openly in military becomes legal.
    President of Bahamas made an announcement in 1998, explicitly supporting LGBTQ+ individuals to serve in the military
  • April 22
    Homosexual activity becomes illegal (imprisonment as punishment).
    Imprisonment of up to 5 years for "gross indecency"
  • April 2
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Sexual orientation had been read-in as a protected ground in spite of no explicit mention in the law during this span. Reading-in of transgender under "gender" is a more recent development.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Sexual orientation was not included in the Alberta Human Rights act until 2009 but was "read in" by the Alberta Human Rights Commission since 1998.
  • January 2
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
  • (date unknown)
    Homosexual activity becomes male illegal, female legal.
    upto 5 years imprisonment
  • Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    The Republika Srpska decriminalized homosexuality in 1998
  • January 1
    Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    legalized when they also equalized age of consent.
  • Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    No
  • Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    No
  • Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    No
  • Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    No
  • Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    No
  • Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    No
  • Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    nationwide since 1998.
  • Homosexual activity becomes male illegal, female legal.
    Punishment of 2 years in prison.
  • (date unknown)
    Same-sex marriage becomes not legal.
    Since homosexual activity is illegal in Tonga, same-sex marriage is not legal.
  • Same-sex adoption becomes single only.
    Single LGBT individuals may adopt children, but same-sex couples may not adopt jointly or by way of second parent adoption.
  • January 1
    Homosexuals serving openly in military becomes illegal.
    Homosexuality is currently illegal in Tanzania
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    There are several provision that bans discrimination against the basis of sexual orientations and gender identities. A court ruling has also stated that the general anti-discrimination law in the constitution extends its coverage to sexual orientation and gender identities as well.
  • (date unknown)
    Blood donations by MSMs becomes banned (indefinite deferral).
    In 1998, China banned homosexual men and women from donating blood out of fear of spreading HIV.
  • January 1
    Equal age of consent becomes equal.
    No
  • Equal age of consent becomes equal.
    No
  • Equal age of consent becomes equal.
    No
  • Equal age of consent becomes equal.
    Got equalized when it was legalized.
  • Equal age of consent becomes equal.
    No
  • (date unknown)
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    State law provides protections from discrimination based on sexual orientation only. Additionally, public state employees are granted some benefits solely based upon marriage, same-sex partners are eligible to receive these benefits.
  • January 1
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Discrimination is illegal for both sexual orientation and gender identity
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Under the Costa Rican Criminal Code.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Discrimination is illegal for both sexual orientation and gender identity
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    No

LGBT Organizations Founded in 1998

  • Equality California FaviconEquality California
    Equality California is the largest statewide LGBT advocacy organization in California working to secure full and lasting equality for and acceptance of LGBT people.
  • Out & Equal FaviconOut & Equal
    Out & Equal Workplace Advocates educates and empowers organizations, human resources professionals, employee resource groups, and individual employees through programs and…
  • The Trevor Project FaviconThe Trevor Project
    ~~ Mission ~~ The mission of The Trevor Project is to end suicide among gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and questioning young people. The organization works to fulfill…
  • JFLAG FaviconJFLAG
    J-FLAG is the first human rights organisation in the history of Jamaica to serve the needs of LGBT peoples and over time it became the first port of call for the media, resulting…