005 - Lithuania embracing the LGBTQ community with Tomas Vytautas Raskevicius

In this episode Ieva speaks with Tomas Vytautas Raskevicius, a human rights activist, Vilnius city councilor, and self-described "professional gay." As an advocate for LGBTQ rights in Lithuania, Tomas shares his expertise on LGBTQ topics and what it means to be gay in Lithuania.

Questions discussed with Tomas Vytautas Raskevicius:

  • So let’s jump right in. You founded the National LGBTQ rights organization in 1993; can you tell me about that moment? How did that come to be?

  • How would you evaluate the progress in Lithuania when it comes to LGBTQ rights, since you first founded your organisation?

  • And how would you describe the current situation of the LGBTQ community in Lithuania?

  • And what are the main challenges for the National LGBTQ rights organisation?

  • What do you think needs to be done in Lithuania in order for same-sex partnerships and same-sex marriages to become legal?

  • What do you think is the impact of the efforts of Baltic pride -- for example the pride parade -- on society’s views of the LGBTQ community?

  • If you’re comfortable sharing with us, what was your experience of coming out a couple of decades ago?

  • Do you think there are differences between a generation that grew up in the Soviet Union and the generation that was born in free Lithuania when it comes to tolerance/intolerance towards LGBTQ community?

  • How do you think we can create a safe environment for LGBTQ people in Lithuania?

  • How do you think we can better inform or educate society in Lithuania about LGBTQ people and their experience?

  • What are the main goals of the National LGBTQ rights organisation for the next few years?

Article is written by Ruta Naujokaitė, who is as well a host at Lithuanian Dream Podcast and the president at LEO in Berlin. Ruta is a Marketing Manager with 7 year’s experience across NGO and digital health sectors. Specialising in digital marketing and passionate about gender equality and bringing Lithuania to the global digital map. She is looking forward to network with people passionate about leadership and marketing in digital health space.