In order to position itself firmly on this subject, IKEA Romania carried out a research in the four capitals of the South-Eastern Europe region, which it made public on the occasion of the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia. The company has achieved relevant results regarding the acceptance of LGBT + people in their own homes, which formed the basis of this spring’s campaign, “Love is always welcome.” Through this initiative, the Swedish retailer aims to publicly show its support for the community and encourage its customers, business partners and employees to show support and inclusion for LGBT + people, starting with their own homes.
Bucharest stands out when it comes to hiding sexual orientation
Although Bucharest is a growing European capital and increasingly culturally diverse, the study shows that members of the LGBT + community are less accepted than in other capitals in the region (Belgrade, Zagreb and Ljubljana). Very few respondents said they felt fully accepted at home after revealing their sexual identity to family members. As a result, 33% of Bucharest’s LGBT + people choose not to share information about their sexual orientation with anyone, compared to 12% of the other three capitals.
In terms of the general situation in the community, this is not a good thing given that 38% of people who publicly acknowledge and express their sexual orientation do not feel accepted at all.
Emotional pressure, stronger and more present than physical
Another interesting result is that although they do not suffer from physical or verbal violence after coming out, most people feel oppressive and hostile in their own homes. They feel that their family members feel ashamed, hiding their sexual orientation from other people, or even favoring heterosexual siblings in the family.
Love must always be welcome, anytime, anywhere
The “Love is always welcome” campaign was officially launched by hoisting the flag of the LGBT + community in front of the two IKEA stores in Bucharest. Furthermore, IKEA aims to provide a range of useful tips and information for accepting LGBT + people, as well as practical guidance on how each of us can help transform our homes and community into a more inclusive and welcoming environment.
At IKEA, we believe that everyone has the right to a place that they can name at home – which is not limited to four walls or a roof over their heads. It is also a place of security, belonging and acceptance. Many LGBT + people do not have this experience in their own homes and often feel discriminated against and marginalized. In our view, it is essential to make the daily life of everyone around us easier, feeling both obliged and privileged to militate for a fairer and more equal society, said Violeta Neniţă, Market Manager at IKEA Romania .
Moreover, IKEA has prepared and published a simple guide on the company’s website, which includes some tips on how we can turn our homes into spaces of tolerance and acceptance for LGBT + people in the community. At the same time, the Swedish retailer has introduced the specially designed campaign sticker – Love is always welcome, which can be downloaded by anyone who wants to mark their home, work or any other space as a safe, open and welcoming place for all , regardless of sexual orientation and identity