A gay employee who had been subjected to verbal abuse and mobbing by co-workers was forced to resign from the Turkish branch of the international company earlier this year. The employee, who worked at various levels throughout the company for the last 10 years, had to leave his job due to threats and sexist remarks after the disclosing his sexual orientation and filed a lawsuit against the company.
The Turkish LGBTI groups started a campaign to support the fired employee with the initiative of the Istanbul Charter of the Turkish LGBTI Association. Many LGBTI activists from different charters are following the case.
İstanbul LGBTI Solidarity Association issued the following statement about the GAP case;
“As the LGBTI community, we face violence and inequality—and sometimes torture, even execution—because of who we love, how we look, or who we are. Sexual orientation and gender identity are integral aspects of us as human beings and should never lead to discrimination or abuse. We started a campaign for a friend who has been exposed to this kind of discriminatory practice. A gay friend who has worked for 10 years at various levels of the international clothing company GAP with high performance has been forced to resign after the disclosing his sexual orientation. He was verbally harassed by other employees of the firm. We, as the LGBTI community will continue to fight to regain our rights for life, education, work, accommodation and communication in this system. These are both our fundamental and constitutional rights. In this spirit, we invite all our friends to Caglayan Courthouse on Wednesday at 09.00 to help support our case.”
Queer activists are continuing their struggle for rights and recognition in Turkey against the face of adversity. Last year police used tear-gas, water cannons and rubber bullets against demonstrators and arrested dozens of activists during the annual LGBTI pride march in Istanbul. This year the LGBTI charter in Istanbul announced Pride Week for the week of June 19th, 2017.