We walk quickly down the crowded streets of Bucharest, to the headquarters of ACCEPT. This organization is the largest LGBT rights NGO is Romania, and we have a quick meeting scheduled with organizers as they prepare for this Saturday’s Gay-Fest march.
The organization’s building is along a quiet side street, but distinguishable from the street by a large rainbow flag. Inside, we met up with Bogdan Istrate, the group’s PR coordinator, and the organization’s Executive Director Alina Oancea. They are very hospitable, as they sit down with us to discuss the LGBT situation in Romania.
We often have to face the “normality issue” here, she tells, currently many people consider sexual minority groups as not normal, so we are still struggling with this, to change these negative social attitudes…but in the future I hope it becomes more natural and accepted.
Unlike many larger prides, she explains holding their march is more of a public statement:
“We want to send a message to the whole of Romania that the LGBT are people who have the same rights as everyone else.”
~ Alina Oancea, Executive Director of ACCEPT-Romania.
Gay-Fest 2010 is scheduled for this Saturday, May 22, and they are expecting around 500 people in attendance.