Why a European Lesbian* Conference?

Background story:

During the 2016 annual ILGA Europe Conference held in Cyprus, a specific lesbian* workshop took place for the first time in years. More than 70 lesbian* activists from all over Europe had the opportunity to come together and realize that, despite differences in political, legal and financial status within the European lesbian* movements, there is a common and urgent need to focus on lesbians* needs, struggles and oppression, to empower and to increase our visibility and broaden networks.

For the past five decades, outstanding lesbian* activists have dedicated a great deal of their energy to struggles indirectly related to their own needs and thus contributed to social change. Whereas all minorities included in the LGBTI community have managed to gather and structure their own forums, councils, and meetings in addition to the general LGBTI organizations in Europe, this has not been the case for lesbians*. European lesbians* lack the fundamental structures, tools and mechanisms to fight lesbophobia, sexism, misogyny, transphobia and interphobia, racism and all other types of discrimination experienced daily by members of the community.

This conference is the first step in the long-expected and needed construction of a strong lesbian* movement in Europe that will bring together a diverse team in the organizing committee by making it as inclusive and representative as possible. The conference will offer a platform for the empowerment of lesbian* communities, will open discussion on the needs and struggles, the successes and achievements, will create space for the lesbian culture and the history of lesbian activism and with all of that it will set a foundation for building of a strong lesbian* movement in Europe.

 

 

Mission Statement:

  • Discuss specific needs and challenges of lesbians* within community and society;
  • Exchange knowledge and experience between lesbians* across Europe and provide space for networking and alliances;
  • Focus on a personal well-being of the lesbians*;
  • Expand all kinds of visibility for lesbians* throughout Europe;
  • Empower all underrepresented groups in the lesbian* community;
  • Set a long-term dynamic and agenda for lesbians* to strengthen their position as a group and as individuals in European societies;
  • Contribute to general social changes in Europe by sharing the feminist-situated lesbian experience.

 

 

EL*C Board

Chairs
Mariella Müller, Vienna + Silvia Casalino, Paris

Secretaries
Biljana Ginova, R.Macedonia + Maria von Känel, Switzerland

Treasurer
Luise Luksch, Vienna

Board Members
Leila Lohman, Switzerland; Michaela Tulipan, Vienna; Ewa Dziedzic, Vienna; Olena Shevchenko, Kiev, Ukraine; Aurora Baba, Albania; Mihaela Rodica Despan, Romania; Alice Coffin, Paris; Ilaria Todde, Belgium; Anastasia Danilova, Moldova, Pia Stevenson, Austria