The United Kingdom is a shining beacon of LGBT rights and civil liberties.

The legalisation of homosexuality, an equal age of consent, civil partnerships, same-sex marriage, the right to adopt, equal access to IVF and the right to change your legal gender. All these battles were won in our parliaments, decided by our elected representatives, and built on many centuries championing the rights of minority groups. Never let it be said that these rights were handed to us by the European Union, many of whose members still deny equality and decency to LGBT people. These were our victories - and we should be proud.

Together we should be proud to live in a country judged to be the best place in Europe if you are lesbian, gay, bisexual or trans.
— Rt Hon David Cameron MP
 
Hate-motivated violence has a particularly damaging and long-term effect on victims. Yet the EU, as well as many of its members, do not recognise crimes based on the perceived sexual orientation or gender identity as hate crimes in their legislation.
— Amnesty International


We have a duty to protect and promote those rights around the world.

The European Union has failed in that task - whether in improving attitudes to LGBT people in Eastern Europe, or fighting for equality in the rest of the world. The European Union is too insular, too bureaucratic and too indifferent to injustice. A more internationalist, globally-engaged UK will be an even more effective champion of LGBT rights around the world. As we will be able to sign our own free trade deals, we will be better placed to put pressure on countries to improve LGBT rights, especially within the Commonwealth.


Same Sex Marriage in European Union nations

Most EU countries still discriminate against LGBT people. Just 12 out of 28 have legalised same-sex marriage, while 8 even ban it specifically under their constitution.

 

We must build an immigration system that is fair to LGBT people around the world.

The LGBT community is a global one. We meet, befriend and fall in love with people all over the world. But in the European Union, 'free movement' is about holding the right passport, not the values we share. It has never been more difficult for people outside the EU to move to the UK - including many brilliant, talented LGBT people looking to realise their dreams of living here. Outside the EU, the UK could shape its own immigration system, encouraging people who share our values of freedom and equality to make our nation their home.