What are the most LGBT-friendly countries? UK falls down the list

The UK was ranked 14th by the worldwide LGBTQ+ rights organisation the previous year (Alamy/PA)
The UK was ranked 14th by the worldwide LGBTQ+ rights organisation the previous year (Alamy/PA)

The UK has fallen in the rankings for the top LGBTQ-friendly countries in Europe and is number 17 on this year's Rainbow Map. The UK was ranked 14th by the worldwide LGBTQ+ rights organisation the previous year, meaning the UK has dropped three spots.

ILGA-Europe emphasised that even if the UK's percentage is the same as the previous year (53.39 per cent), the country dropped since other European nations passed this.

Since 2022, Ireland (53.67 per cent), Germany (55 per cent) and Greece (56 per cent) have all surpassed the UK.

What are the top 20 countries in the list, the lowest three and why has the UK dropped in rankings? Here’s what we know.

What are the most LGBTQ-friendly countries?

1. Malta - 89.29 per cent

2. Belgium - 76.37 per cent

3. Denmark - 75.54 per cent

4. Spain - 74.10 per cent

5. Iceland - 70.62 per cent

6. Finland - 69.62 per cent

7. Luxembourg - 68.03 per cent

8. Sweden - 67.97 per cent

9. Norway - 67.42 per cent

10. France - 63.30 per cent

11. Portugal - 62.03 per cent

12. Montenegro - 61.43 per cent

13. Greece - 56.69 per cent

14. Netherlands - 55.99 per cent

15. Germany - 54.94 per cent

16. Ireland - 53.67 per cent

17. United Kingdom - 53.39 per cent

18. Croatia - 49.41 per cent

19. Austria - 49.08 per cent

20. Switzerland - 47.38 per cent

What are some of the worst countries for LGBTQ+ people?

Azerbaijan, Turkey and Armenia are the three worst nations in Europe for LGBTQ+ individuals (2 per cent, 4 per cent and 8 per cent, respectively). Each nation has been near the bottom for the past two years, although Armenia has gained some points for lifting its prohibition on gay men donating blood.

Why has the UK dropped on the scale?

The UK is lacking certain crucial puzzle pieces, according to ILGA-Europe.

It cited the conversion therapy prohibition, which has been “stalled” for years and is riddled with loopholes, the lack of official recognition for intersex individuals, and a rise in “anti-trans rhetoric” in the media across the nation.

Prime minister Rishi Sunak said in a debate in October that “trans women are not women,” trans individuals were also excluded from a long-sought conversion therapy prohibition.

ILGA-Europe added trans rights are increasingly in ruins. Reforms to the law governing gender recognition have failed, gender-affirming healthcare is at best inconsistent, and trans-inclusive education is currently a target.

Plans to send certain asylum seekers to Rwanda also endanger LGBTQ+ people who may have already fled poverty and persecution.