Travelling internationally can be one of the biggest challenges for LGBTQ+ people due to the varying legal and cultural attitudes towards sexual orientation and gender identity in different countries, and the difficulties in understanding the differences between law and society.
In recognition of the fact that international travel is an important aspect of working at the University of Birmingham, the Rainbow Network committee are pleased to run a global mobility scheme to support LGBTQ+ staff and PhD students. If you are going to travel to one of the countries listed below and you want to speak to another Rainbow Network member who has experience of living there about their experiences, email the committee at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will put you in touch.
For added context, we recommend reading the Stonewall Global Workplace Briefing for the country which you will be visiting at https://www.stonewall.org.uk/global-workplace-briefings. If you are travelling to Dubai, you may also want to read our "Top tips for travelling to Dubai" which have been developed through conversations with people who have experience of this region.
(Note that conversations about personal experiences should be considered in the context of a country's laws regarding sexual orientation and gender identity; individual experiences may differ, and a country's culture may differ from region to region which is why regions are included in the below list wherever possible.)
These are some of the countries (and regions) where our members have experience of living (correct as of September 2021):
- Austria (including Vienna)
- Brazil (including Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo)
- Canada (including Montreal, Quebec, and Toronto)
- Croatia (including Dubrovnik)
- Egypt (including Sharm)
- France (including Lyon, Montpellier, and Strasbourg)
- Germany (including Berlin, Bonn, Cologne, Dusseldorf, and Frankfurt)
- Greece (including Athens and Crete)
- Italy (including Rome and Venice)
- Hong Kong
- Latvia (including Riga)
- Lebanon (including Beirut)
- Lithuania (including Vilnius)
- Poland (including Krakow and Warsaw)
- Portugal (including Coimbra, Faro, Lisbon, and Porto)
- Saudi Arabia
- Slovakia (including Bratislava)
- Spain (including Barcelona, Madrid, Seville, and Valencia)
- UAE (including Abu Dhabi and Dubai)
- USA (including Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wyoming)
If the country to which you are going to travel is not listed here, let the committee know and we will see whether there is any other way in which we may be able to help (e.g. asking the mailing list whether anybody has experience of that country).
If you have experience of living in other countries and would be happy to speak to other Rainbow Network members about this, let the committee know at email@example.com.