Gay Guide

Sweden
Pink Star Rating

10

Capital

Stockholm

Other Main Cities/Resorts

Goteborg, Malmo, Uppsala

Scene and Culture

Sweden is one of the most gay friendly nations on earth with a whole raft of legislation protecting gay and lesbian rights including anti-discrimination law and partnership registration. Gay rights activists twiddle their thumbs in Sweden. The population of Sweden is not huge and so the gay scene is not as large as you might expect. Nonetheless there is a reasonable scene with many bars, clubs, cafes, restaurants and video clubs in Stockholm plus a smaller scene in Malmo and Goteborg. Gay and lesbian tourists might find Sweden a little on the quiet side compared to the larger European countries.

Gay Age of Consent

15

Lesbian Age of Consent

15

Straight Age of Consent

15

Legal Notes

Sweden has got no anti-gay or anti-lesbian provisions in its penal code. The legal age of consent has been 15 years for gay men, lesbians, and heterosexuals since 1978. The Swedish Constitution does not ban discrimination on grounds of "sexual orientation". However in 1987 discrimination against gay men and lesbians was included in the section of the penal code which deals with discrimination on grounds of race, etc. Businesses commit an offence if they fail to provide their normal level of service to someone because of his/her homosexuality with a penalty of a fine or up to one year’s imprisonment. There is also a provision in the penal code that protects against incitement to hatred against individual lesbians and gay men but not groups. It is not illegal to discriminate against homosexual associations or organisations. In 1999 the Swedish Parliament voted in favour of new legislation banning discrimination in the labour market on the grounds of sexual orientation. Gays are not banned from the Armed Forces. The law recognises same-sex couples, both as domestic partners (cohabitants) and registered partners. A domestic partnership may be a staging post on the way to a registered partnership or it may be a permanent lifestyle. Registered Partnership is reserved for same sex couples. Legally speaking a partnership involves most of the rules that apply to marriage but there are some differences. For instance, registered partners are required to care for each other, are entitled to half the property held by the other partner and enjoy inheritance rights and rights concerning family name. They are treated as a couple for tax, national insurance and legal purposes. Some of the rules offer increased freedom and strength to live in a relationship, whereas others impose responsibility and mutual respect. In June 2002 a new law was passed allowing same sex couples the same adoption rights as heterosexuals. Cohabiting gay couples registered in a legal partnership can now apply for the right to adopt children within Sweden and abroad. In 2005, the government said it would introduce changes to its fertilisation treatment laws. Lesbian couples who have signed up to a civil union scheme will be allowed access to fertilisation treatment; currently only married couples or women living with men have access to state funded treatment.

Population

8.87 million

Currency

Kroner Sk

Climate

Sweden is very cool so the best time to visit is in the summer from May to August. Sweden has a typically continental climate with a moderate to large range in temperatures between summer and winter. Most of the Norrland has a long winter of seven months with cold temperatures and a hot summer of less than three months while Skane in the south has a cold winter of two months and a summer of more than four months. Average annual precipitation is heaviest in the southwest at 580 mm (23 inches) while the average for Lapland in the northwest is only 300 mm and most rainfall north of Stockholm is snow. Average temperature ranges in Stockholm are from -5c to -1c in February to 4c to 22c in July.

malmö
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