2008 in LGBT Rights

In 2008, there were 56 recorded legal changes made affecting LGBT people. In the previous year, there were 54 changes made and 93 in the following year. A total of 713 legal changes were made in the 2000s.

  • December 19
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    Amended Act No.111 of 2003 requires for transgender people to change their legal gender, (1) be at least 20 years of age, (2) not currently married, (3) no child less than 20 years, (4) infertile (no gonads or persistent lack of gonadal function), (5) and has a body which appears to have genital parts of those of the opposite sex. And also requires medical certificate by two or more psychiatrist.
  • November 26
    Same-sex marriage becomes banned.
    Cohabitation agreement, corresponding to civil union, was instituted in Greece, in November 26, 2008, only available to opposite-sex couples. In April 2006, former President of the PA.SO.K. party, George Papandreou proposed to Parliament the recognition of unmarried same-sex or heterosexual couples. However, the project was not accepted by the LGBT organizations as it was considered that it would not have any benefit in their rights, since it prohibited the adoption of children.
  • November 5
    Same-sex marriage becomes banned.
    Banned by Proposition 8 being passed within the state’s constitution.
  • November 4
    Same-sex marriage becomes banned.
    Palau's Constitution defines marriage as between a man and a woman. The same-sex marriage ban was added to the Constitution in 2008. The ban was among the 22 amendments passed during the November 4, 2008 referendum.
  • October 28
    Same-sex marriage becomes legal.
    In 2008, Connecticut became the first US state to legalize same-sex marriage, following Massachusetts in 2004.
  • October 20
    Same-sex adoption becomes single only.
    Under article 68 of the 2008 constitution, adoption is explicitly only grated to different-sex unions. Singles can still apply for adoption.
  • Same-sex marriage becomes civil unions (marriage rights).
    Although marriage is still defined as a union between a man and a woman, article 68 of the 2008 constitution also state: The stable and monogamous union between two persons without any other marriage ties who have a common-law home, for the lapse of time and under the conditions and circumstances provided for by law, shall enjoy the same rights and obligations of those families bound by formal marriage ties.
  • September 12
    Same-sex adoption becomes legal.
    Under federal law since 2015. Single adoption, joint adoption for married couples and second parent adoption for married couples are all allowed for LGBT people. In Kentucky, businesses can discriminate against LGBT people on the basis of religion. While it is unclear if this also applies to adoption agencies, such a case has been brought up in court and ended up with the judge resigning.
  • August 30
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    From 2008 onwards, gender identity began to be included in anti-discrimination laws in different cases in Portugal.
  • August 23
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Aricle 5 of the 2008 Labour Law prohibits employment discrimination. Sexual orientation is one of explicitly mentioned grounds.
  • August 5
    Gender-affirming care becomes legal.
    Gender Redetermination Decree No. 88/2008/ND-CP specifies the rules of care for transgender people, including: 3. Gender reassignment treatment: a) At the request of the person re-establishing gender, the research and treatment facility will select the gender that will have appropriate treatment methods, maintaining the principle that in the case of a given gender, the person being determined will be the gender that best integrates life mentally, physiologically and socially; b) The research and treatment facility determines the age of the person applying for gender reassignment surgery, making sure that it is the earliest age; c) Medical and therapeutic research centers recommend surgical treatment and postoperative hormonal treatment.
  • Right to change legal gender becomes illegal.
    Legally, one can only change the gender when he/she is very young and has condition that "confuses" the actual gender of the child. Once the sexual organ is "fully developed", a citizen can't change his/her gender.
  • July 29
    Equal age of consent becomes equal.
    The age of consent was set equally at 18 with the decriminilization of homosexuality in 2008.
  • Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    Same-sex sexual activity was legalized in Panama through a presidential decree on July 29th, 2008, repealing a 1949 law which would incur those convicted with a 500$ fine or prison sentence. The age of consent was equalized at 18 and homosexuality was declassifed as a mental illness subsequently.
  • June 16
    Same-sex marriage becomes legal.
    Same-sex marriage in California was briefly legal in 2008, before being overturned five months later.
  • June 14
    LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    .
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    ..
  • June 4
    Gender-affirming care becomes legal.
    Gender-affirming care is legal and provided for since 2008 by the government per Ministry of Public Health Resolution No. 126.
  • June 1
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    Legal
  • May 29
    Same-sex marriage becomes foreign same-sex marriages recognized only.
    In this context, "foreign" is defined as same-sex marriages legally performed in other jurisdictions but heretofore unrecognized by New York State.
  • May 1
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Legal measures against LGBT discrimination exist in the workplace (2008) and in health (2014).
  • Equal age of consent becomes unequal.
    The age of consent in for anal sex in Canada is 18, whereas the age of consent for acts of sex is 16.
  • April 16
    Blood donations by MSMs becomes legal.
    Legal In 2008, Russia repealed its ban against gay people donating blood. The law was signed in effect on April 16, 2008 by Tatyana Golikova, the minister of Russia's Health and Social Development department
  • Blood donations by MSMs becomes legal.
    In 2008, Russia repealed its ban against gay people donating blood. The law was signed in effect on April 16, 2008 by Tatyana Golikova, the minister of Russia's Health and Social Development department
  • March 10
    LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    .
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    .
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    .
  • February 17
    Blood donations by MSMs becomes legal.
    after removing restrictions.
  • February 3
    Same-sex marriage becomes other type of partnership.
    The terminology for same sex union used is domestic partnership. Same-sex marriage from other states are also recognized in oregon.
  • January 15
    Blood donations by MSMs becomes legal.
    The first version of the questionnaire stated that male homosexuals, African citizens from countries infected with malaria, uneducated people, as well as other categories of people cannot donate blood in Romania. After the hearings of the Council for Combating Discrimination, the Ministry of Health removed the questions considered discriminatory from the questionnaire.
  • (date unknown)
    Gender-affirming care becomes legal.
    In 2008, Palestine adopted the ICD-10 classification, which contains codes for diagnosing transsexualism in adulthood and childhood, which authorize the initiation of medical transition.
  • Gender-affirming care becomes legal.
    In 2008, Jordan adopted the ICD-10 classification, which contains codes for diagnosing transsexualism in adulthood and childhood, which authorize the initiation of medical transition.
  • Gender-affirming care becomes legal.
    In 2008, Iraq adopted the ICD-10 classification, which contains codes for diagnosing transsexualism in adulthood and childhood, which authorize the initiation of medical transition.
  • Gender-affirming care becomes legal.
    In 2008, Honduras adopted the ICD-10 classification, which contains codes for diagnosing transsexualism in adulthood and childhood, which authorize the initiation of medical transition.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    illegal since 2008
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    illegal since 2008
  • January 1
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, no restrictions.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes no protections.
    Housing discrimination protections was not added to Macau's Criminal Code. Full housing discrimination protection pending.
  • (date unknown)
    LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Under the Equal Opportunities Act, Sexual orientation discrimination is prohibited in housing.
  • January 1
    LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Housing Discrimination laws completely protect sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • Same-sex marriage becomes legal.
    under the Marriage Act.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Full protections for Employment only. Full discrimination protections pending.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    under the Macau criminal code. and under Protections for government Employees.
  • Blood donations by MSMs becomes legal.
    There are no restrictions for blood donations by MSMs.
  • Conversion therapy becomes varies by region.
    Article 9(3)(d) of Regional Ordinance of Apurimac No. 017-2008 (2008) prohibits forcing a person to undergo medical and/or psychological treatment in order to alter or modify their sexual orientation.
  • Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    The gender marker on identity documents can only be changed if the applicant has undergone gender affirmation surgery, specifically genital surgery. The petitioner must submit their request for a change of gender marker before the Civil Section of the Local Court. Next, the request is submitted to the National Commission for Comprehensive Attention to Trans People, together with the medical certification that the petitioner has undergone surgery. The following evidence must be accredited before the court: (1) the summary of the clinical records, (2) the descriptive medical criteria of the surgery with emphasis on its irreversibility, (3) a document confirming the intervention signed by the CENESEX, and (4) photographic records from before and after the intervention. Gender affirming surgery and hormonal treatment are provided and covered by the national health system since 2008 (Resolution No. 126). Since 2022, transgender people can change their name through self-determination. Instruction #1 of 2022 of the Ministry of Justice repealed Instruction #1 of 2012 that made the name change for trans people subject to a change of sex, following genital adjustment surgery.
  • Same-sex marriage becomes banned.
    Same-sex marriage is banned in Tajikistan
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    Discrimination of LGBTQ+ is currently illegal and can result in being fined or/and imprisonment.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    As of 2008 (no specific date, N/D), rejecting employment due to sexual orientation or/and gender identity is currently illegal.
  • (date unknown)
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    Since 2008, transgender people in Georgia can change documents and personal names to reflect their preferred gender after having undergone sex reassignment surgery.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Some protections from harassment based on sexual orientation in schools.
  • January 1
    Serving openly in military becomes legal.
    LGBT allowed to serve openly in the military since 2008.
  • (date unknown)
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    State law provides for protections against employment discrimination in regards to both sexual orientation and gender identification.
  • January 1
    Serving openly in military becomes legal.
    Article 13 of the Law on the Serbian Army from 2007 prohibits privileging or depriving members of the Army of their rights or duties, especially because of race, religion, gender, national affiliation, origin, or some other personal characteristic. In 2010, the Serbian Army officially announced that there is no discrimination in the Army on any basis, including sexual orientation. In 2014, trans woman Major Helena sued the military after she was forcefully retired due to coming out as trans. In 2015, the Minister of Defense denied that there was discrimination in the Serbian Army and at the same time apologized to transgender Major Helena for, as he said, an administrative error in the decision on her retirement ("an established diagnosis that can cause harmful consequences for the reputation of the Serbian Army").
  • (date unknown)
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Article 2 of the Equal Opportunities Act 2008, prohibits discrimination in employment and other activities on many grounds, including sexual orientation.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    According to Article 45(2) and Article 406(3) of the Novo Código Laboral Cabo-Verdiano.

LGBT Organizations Founded in 2008

  • Transgender Education & Advocacy (TEA) FaviconTransgender Education & Advocacy (TEA)
    A Kenyan organization aimed at promoting awareness and creating an appropriate environment for the well-being of all transgender and intersex individuals in Kenya.
  • Latinos Salud FaviconLatinos Salud
    Global
    Latinos Salud was founded in 2008 to create a safe space for Latino gay guys and their partners to find friends, support, and resources. Our 13 staff members hail from Brazil…
  • Pink Alliance FaviconPink Alliance
    Pink Alliance is a non-profit organisation involved in gay rights advocacy and campaigning.
  • Eesti LGBT  FaviconEesti LGBT
    The Estonian LGBT Association is a non-profit organization for LGBT (lesbian, gay, bi, trans) people. The mission of the Estonian LGBT Association, as a representative of the…
  • Beijing LGBT Center FaviconBeijing LGBT Center
    The Beijing LGBT Center was a non-profit organization aimed at empowering China's LGBT community. The community-based organization is focused on providing resources for LGBT…
  • Bi Social Network FaviconBi Social Network
    Global
    Bi Social Network (BSN) is working with underserved diverse communities on poverty issues, teen homelessness, marginalized groups and the elderly. BSN is interested in the human…
  • Shamakami FaviconShamakami
    It is the only registered organization working in the state of Meghalaya, with a rights based approach with a vision to deliver equal rights and dignity to the LGBT community.…
  • Health Initiative for Men (HIM) FaviconHealth Initiative for Men (HIM)
    With five health centres throughout the Lower Mainland, Health Initiative for Men is a non-profit society that aims to strengthen the health and well-being of gay men. We offer…
  • Trans-Fuzja  FaviconTrans-Fuzja
    Trans-Fuzja is an LGBTQ+ rights organisation that works to improve the living conditions of transgender people in Poland and support them and their relatives through the…
  • LİSTAG Derneği FaviconLİSTAG Derneği
    LISTAG (Families and Friends of LGBTIs in Turkey) LİSTAG (Families of LGBTs in İstanbul) is a voluntary suppport and solidarity group for families and friends of lesbian…