2009 in LGBT Rights

In 2009, there were 91 recorded legal changes made affecting LGBT people. In the previous year, there were 55 changes made and 117 in the following year. A total of 709 legal changes were made in the 2000s.

  • December 21
    Same-sex adoption becomes legal.
    On December 21st 2009, Prince Edward Island updated all mentions such as "husband and wife" and "mother and father" to be gender neutral, ensuring same-sex couples the same recognition.
  • December 10
    Serving openly in military becomes lesbians, gays, bisexuals permitted, transgender people banned.
    The Constitutional Court ruled that ones sexual orientation is not good grounds to terminate service in the police or the military. Peru has yet to allow trans service
  • October 30
    Blood donations by MSMs becomes legal.
    There is no criteria against MSM donating blood in North Macedonia.
  • October 1
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Sexual orientation has been explicitly protected since 2009 in the Alberta Human Rights Act. Gender identity is read-in by the Alberta Human Rights Commission under "gender" though it is not explicit in the Act, however a lengthy tribunal process makes this implicit protection inaccessible to many Albertans.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Sexual orientation is officially a protected group. While not explicit in the law, the Alberta Human Rights Commission reads in transgender rights under "gender", but lengthy tribunal process makes this implicit protection inaccessible to many Albertans.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    There remains no explicit protection of transgender people under the Act, though the Alberta Human Rights Commission reads in transgender rights under "gender".
  • September 28
    Same-sex adoption becomes legal.
    Either single or coupled LGBT people can adopt children.
  • September 19
    LGBT housing discrimination becomes no protections.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes no protections.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes no protections.
  • September 10
    Same-sex adoption becomes legal.
    In 2009, Uruguay became the first Latin American country to allow same-sex couples to adopt children.
  • August 31
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    Surgery is required in the Vital Statistics Act.
  • August 5
    LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    The Law on Prohibition of Discrimination adopted on July 23, 2009 in its original version prohibited discrimination in all areas (including Housing) on the basis of "sexual expression or orientation" among other grounds.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Under federal law.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Under federal law.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Under federal law
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Under federal law.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Under federal law.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Under federal law.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    The Law on Prohibition of Discrimination adopted on July 23, 2009 prohibited discrimination in all areas on the basis of "sexual expression or orientation" among other grounds. The law is applied at the level of the state, entities, cantons and Br?ko District. Due to the use of imprecise terms, the law was amended in 2016.
  • July 8
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
  • July 2
    Homosexual activity becomes legal.
    In the Delhi High Court case of Naz Foundation v. Govt. of NCT of Delhi, a two-judge Division Bench decriminalized homosexuality by striking down the provisions of Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code that deemed sexual acts between consenting adults as criminal.
  • July 1
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Transsexual people who have undergone a formal gender change are protected against discrimination under labor law, including the protection of their privacy.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes gender identity only.
    Article 7 of the Labor Code of July 1, 2009 and Art. 6 of the Employment Law of June 29, 2016, specify state guarantees regarding legal protection against all forms of discrimination, including those contained in Art. 17 1) within the scope of the obligation to inform, submitted to the National Employment Agency in order to monitor potential cases of discrimination, including on the basis of gender. Since 1972, pursuant to the MOH regulation and then pursuant to Art. 21 of the Civil Code of July 17, 1998, Transsexual people have the right to legally change their gender after undergoing gender reassignment surgery, which was confirmed in an official document of the Turkmen State Publishing Service in the field of medicine and health from 2012, which recognized Transsexualism as a problem under consideration in Turkmenistan, taking into account medical procedures based on ICD(1981, 1999). According to Law No. 519-V on information about private life and its protection of March 20, 2017, Transsexual people who have formally changed their official documents are protected against discrimination by employers.
  • Same-sex marriage becomes civil unions (marriage rights).
    Hungary has an alternative to same-sex marriage which is known as bejegyzett élettársi kapcsolat. Registered partners are entitled to the same inheritance and property rights, widow's pension, tax benefits, social benefits, and immigration and naturalization rights as married spouses, but they don’t get to pick their partner's surname. Since 2012, the Constitution of Hungary has defined marriage as a union exclusively between a man and woman; effectively prohibiting LGBT marriages.
  • Same-sex adoption becomes second parent adoption only.
    Joint adoption not legal at this time, only adoption of one partners existing children.
  • June 18
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    Laos legalized changing gender in 2009 but there is no protection laws.
  • June 17
    LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    LGBT Housing discrimination are illegal
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    All discrimination (about the LGBT) are banned in Czech Republic
  • June
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, no restrictions.
    In 2009, the Supreme Court of Mexico established in its Judgment No. 6/2008 (2009) that the right to personal identity and free development of personality includes the right to gender identity and to "sexual reassignment", which obliges states to provide access to the "rectification of name and sex legal markers". In 2018, the Court issued Judgment No. 1317/2017 (2018) where it analysed the most appropriate procedure to guarantee "sex-gender rectification in the Civil Registry". In summary, this judgment concluded that the type of authority (judicial or administrative) before which the procedure is conducted is irrelevant as long as the nature of the procedure is materially administrative. Specifically, it must (a) be comprehensive; (b) be based on free and informed consent, with no medical, psychological and/or pathologising requirements; (c) be confidential; (d) be expeditious and free of charge; and (e) it must not require surgical or hormonal treatments. Despite this, various Mexican have not unified their regulations and, in many cases, continue to require judicial processing and all sorts of evidence.
  • May 28
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    The Vital Statistics Act was passed on May 28th 2009, allowing transgender individuals to change their gender marker after undergoing sex reassignment surgery. Before then, it was not possible to change it in Newfoundland and Labrador.
  • May 15
    Same-sex adoption becomes second parent adoption only.
    Only able to adopt child of the other partner
  • May 11
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    Law No. 10-129 on Civil Status of 2009 sets out the conditions required for change legal gender. Sex-reassignment surgery is required, but transgender people do it mainly in Serbia, because in Albania such surgeries are not performed.
  • May 1
    Same-sex marriage becomes legal.
    The Riksdag passed a gender-neutral marriage bill in 2009, making Sweden the seventh country in the world to legalize same-sex marriage.
  • April 27
    Same-sex marriage becomes legal.
    In 2009, Iowa became the third state to legalize same-sex marriage. Varnum v. Brien, Supreme Court of Iowa (2009).
  • April 24
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires medical diagnosis.
    Under Article 41 of the Civil Status Law (2013), the Civil Status Registry has the ability to alter an entry, when it has become incorrect after is it made. In 2019, local organisation TransX.at informed ILGA World that, according to local administrative proceedings, to amend their gender markers applicants need to present one statement (in some provinces, two) by a psychologist, a psychiatrist or a psychotherapist attesting for the following facts: (1) a permanent feeling of belonging to the other gender; (2) that it is irreversible in all foresight; and (3) that measures have been taken that lead to a convergence to the outer appearance of the other gender. Gender affirmation surgeries are not necessary. The ruling against compulsory surgical interventions arises from a 2009 case before the Constitutional Court (Judgment No. 2008/17/0054) wherein it was stated that a “feeling of belonging [which] is in all likelihood irreversible and has been expressed in external terms by the person closely aligning their appearance to the external appearance of the opposite gender” is sufficient to validate gender marker change. (ILGA)
  • April 22
    Homosexual activity becomes illegal (imprisonment as punishment).
    Up to 2 years imprisonment and/or up to 50,000 frank fine
  • April 10
    LGBT discrimination becomes no protections.
    On April 9th, 2009, The Court of Appeal, which is the second highest court in Fiji, made a decision saying that the 2006 Fijian coup d'état, where the government of Laisenia Qarase was taken out of power and replaced with military rule, was illegal. President Iloilo issued a statement the following day (April 10th, 2009) saying, "I hereby confirm I have abrogated the 1997 constitution and appointed myself as head of state in the new order." Iloilo immediately assumed all political power in the country. Fiji then was without a Constitution until September 6th, 2013, and so there were no protections against discrimination towards sexual orientation or gender identity.
  • April 7
    LGBT housing discrimination becomes ambiguous.
    The Law on Prohibition of Discrimination from 2009 prohibits discrimination in all areas, but there was no specific article dealing with Housing during this period.
  • Same-sex marriage becomes legal.
    In 2009, Vermont became the third US state to legalize same-sex marriage, following Massachusetts in 2004 and Connecticut in 2008. Vermont was the first state to legalize same-sex marriage by legislative means.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Article 16 of the Anti-Discrimination Law from 2009 bans labour discrimination. Discrimination is prohibited on basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and sex characteristics among others.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    On 26 March 2009, Serbian parliament approved a unified anti-discrimination law, known as the Prohibition of Discrimination Act of 2009, which prohibits, among other categories, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and sex characteristics in all areas.
  • March 19
    Same-sex adoption becomes legal.
    At the time, gay couples were allowed to have civil unions and thus was able to apply as a couple.
  • March 18
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Within the penal code, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation (and discrimination in general) is treated as an aggravating circumstances.
  • March 16
    Same-sex marriage becomes other type of partnership.
    Domestic partnership is recognized by the state as a form of same-sex union
  • March 1
    Blood donations by MSMs becomes banned (5-year deferral).
    No specific date in March. NZBS lists March 2009 on the linked page. NZBS performed a review in 2013 and results are expected to be public shortly.
  • February 28
    Serving openly in military becomes lesbians, gays, bisexuals permitted, transgender people banned.
    Following a military reform law by the Argentine parliament, LGB people can serve, but transgenders are not included.
  • February 27
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Argentina recognizes international convention on human rights. LGBT individuals are explicitly protected in the military code but is not explicitly included in the general discrimination protection code.
  • February 20
    LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Only sexual orientation
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation only.
    Only sexual orientation
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    Discrimination is illegal
  • January 29
    Same-sex marriage becomes other type of partnership.
    A Colombia court ruling implies that even though there are no specific legal provisions, same sex couples can now file for the same right and protection like a different-sex marriage using the provision of a "de facto union" in the 1991 constitution
  • (date unknown)
    Gender-affirming care becomes legal.
    In 2009, Oman 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 restricted.
    In 2009, Laos legalized sterilization, which de facto meant legalizing sex reassignment surgery, however, medical records regarding transsexualism had to be obtained abroad.
  • Gender-affirming care becomes legal.
    In 2009, Turkey adopted the ICD-10 classification, which contains codes for diagnosing transsexualism in adulthood and childhood, which authorize the initiation of medical transition.
  • January 1
    Gender-affirming care becomes legal.
    In 2009, Saudi Arabia adopted the ICD-10 classification, which contains codes for diagnosing transsexualism in adulthood and childhood, which authorize the initiation of medical transition.
  • (date unknown)
    Gender-affirming care becomes legal, but restricted for minors.
    In 2009, Albania legalized the right to sterilization, thanks to which adult Albanians can undergo full medical transition, in accordance with the principles set out in the ICD.
  • Same-sex marriage becomes banned.
    The so called Civil Code (Law no. 287/2009) places a statutory ban on same-sex marriage in Romania.
  • January 1
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    The current legal measures against LGBT discrimination are only limited to the public administration. Protection against LGBT discrimination in: Health: Ministerial Agreement No. 202 (2009), Law 307 (2016). Public empleoyment: Decree No. 56 (2010). Clinical practice for students: Law 227 (2019) Education: Law 431 (2022).
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    The current legal measures against LGBT discrimination are only limited to the public administration. Protection against LGBT discrimination in: Health: Ministerial Agreement No. 202 (2009), Law 307 (2016). Public empleoyment: Decree No. 56 (2010). Clinical practice for students: Law 227 (2019) Education: Law 431 (2022). Hate crime law includes sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • (date unknown)
    Censorship of LGBT issues becomes fine as punishment.
    LGBTQ+ content is restricted for minors in Lithuania since 2009. The law has been used to censor LGBT books, TV shows, ads and series under the guise of "protecting minors".
  • Right to change legal gender becomes legal, no restrictions.
    The right to change legal gender was introduced by the Gender Recognition Act 2009.
  • January 1
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    Discrimination of people based on sexual orientation, race, sex, and others is illegal.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Article 8 of the Anti-Discrimination Law from 2008 bans labour discrimination. Discrimination is prohibited on basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and expression among others.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • Same-sex marriage becomes legal.
    No one lives there. Norwegian law however legalizes gay marriage
  • (date unknown)
    LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    There is full discrimination protection in 24 cities and 11 counties in Florida. As well as sexual orientation protection under Florida hate crime law. state wide gender identity discrimination protection under section VII. Some cities and counties have offered some protection, but at the state level there is none.
  • January 1
    Right to change legal gender becomes legal, no restrictions.
  • Right to change legal gender becomes legal, no restrictions.
  • LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Article 8 of the Anti-Discrimination Act from 2008 bans discrimination in Housing. Discrimination is prohibited on basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and expression among others.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Under Estonian law.
  • (date unknown)
    Equal age of consent becomes equal.
    Under the Article 295 of the North Korean Criminal Law, the age of consent is 15 irrespectively of gender of parties.
  • January 1
    LGBT employment discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Rejecting job applications due to sexual orientation, race, sex and others is illegal.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal in some contexts.
    Although the Constitution prohibits any kind of discrimination (but this is difficult to enforce and unclear how applies), Equal Treatment Act only prohibits discrimination in employment.
  • LGBT housing discrimination becomes sexual orientation and gender identity.
    Housing discimination due to sexual orientation, change of legal gender, crossgender identity and expression are illegal. (I am unsure if it was illegal due to legal gender change and sexual orientation before 2009.)
  • Serving openly in military becomes legal.
    Protection against discrimination in the Swedish Armed Forces is explicitly stated. In 2015, Sweden even ran a campaign encouraging LGBT people to serve openly. The campaign featured a poster of an individual in camouflage with a rainbow flag badge on her arm, with the headline, "some things you should not have to camouflage." The poster read, "Equality is an essential ingredient in a democracy. In the military, we treat them with respect and see the differences of others as a fortress. We are an inclusive organisation where all the people who serve and contribute feel welcome and respected."
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    The Penal Code has prohibited discrimination against homosexual men, lesbians, and bisexuals since 1987. A new, consolidated anti-discrimination code (Discrimination Act 2008:567) was added to in 2008 and went into effect on January 1, 2009, which includes transgender identity or expression.
  • Same-sex adoption becomes legal.
  • Same-sex marriage becomes legal.
  • Same-sex adoption becomes legal.
  • Same-sex marriage becomes legal.
  • LGBT discrimination becomes illegal.
    On July 9, 2008, the Croatian Parliament approved a unified anti-discrimination law, known as Law on Suppression of Discrimination which prohibits, among other categories, discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity and expression in all areas.
  • Same-sex marriage becomes banned.
    Ethiopia's federal law places a statutory ban on same-sex marriage.
  • Same-sex adoption becomes legal.
  • (date unknown)
    Serving openly in military becomes legal.
  • Same-sex adoption becomes ambiguous.
    Cambodia banned adoption by gay and lesbian foreigners. It is unclear if gay and lesbian Cambodians could adopt.
  • Right to change legal gender becomes legal, but requires surgery.
    An amandment made in June 2009 to Article 20(1) of the Civil Registration Law allows transgender people to change their legal gender on birth certificates or citizen identification cards following sex reassignment surgery.
  • January 1
    Same-sex marriage becomes legal.
    In 2009, same-sex couples were granted marriage rights, making Norway the sixth country in the world to recognise same-sex marriage.
  • (date unknown)
    Serving openly in military becomes legal.

LGBT Organizations Founded in 2009

  • New Hampshire Freedom To Marry Coalition FaviconNew Hampshire Freedom To Marry Coalition
    New Hampshire Freedom to Marry is New Hampshire's statewide lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) education and advocacy organization.
  • NOH8 Campaign FaviconNOH8 Campaign
    Global
    The NOH8 Campaign is a charitable organization whose mission is to promote marriage, gender and human equality through education, advocacy, social media, and visual protest.
  • Equaldex FaviconEqualdex
    Global
    Equaldex is a collaborative knowledge base for the LGBT movement. The site aims to crowdsource every law related to LGBT rights to provide a comprehensive and global view of the…
  • Coalition Advocating for the Inclusion of Sexual Orientation (CAISO) FaviconCoalition Advocating for the Inclusion of Sexual Orientation (CAISO)
    CAISO seeks to operate as an umbrella or coalition framework that provides a politics (strategic thinking, values) and a brand to enable GLBT political advocacy and social change…
  • Equality Hawai'i FaviconEquality Hawai'i
    Equality Hawaii is dedicated to securing equality for Hawaii's lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgender community.
  • LGBT Voice Tanzania FaviconLGBT Voice Tanzania
    The mission of LGBT VOICE is to promote, support, defend and protect the interests and the general well-being of Gay, Lesbians, bisexual and Transgender people in Tanzania
  • The Youth Empowerment Foundation-TYEF FaviconThe Youth Empowerment Foundation-TYEF
    The youth Empowerment Foundation (TYEF) is a Non- Governmental Organization that was formed in 2009, and not yet registered. TYEF was started with the mandate of Capacity…
  • Positive Voice FaviconPositive Voice
    The Association aims to defend the rights of HIV-positive people, tackle the spread of HIV / AIDS, as well as limit its social and economic impact in Greece.
  • Rainbow School FaviconRainbow School
  • Transvida FaviconTransvida
    Eng: NGO that advocates for the rights of transsexual people, that has made a voice for the approval of relevant laws of gender identity; focused…
  • Deystvie FaviconDeystvie
    Deystvie is an organization dedicated to bringing change to the lives of LGBTI people in Bulgaria. Our vision is to accomplish full rights recognized by the law, and to gain full…
  • Stowarzyszenie Miłość Nie Wyklucza FaviconStowarzyszenie Miłość Nie Wyklucza
  • Gej Lezbejski Info Centar FaviconGej Lezbejski Info Centar
    Strengthening and building the LGBT community through information, creating LGBT media and organizing cultural and artistic events.
  • Aleanca LGBT FaviconAleanca LGBT
    Combat discrimination and promote equality for individuals who identify as LGBT.