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OUT in Morocco

Sexual and gender minorities in Morocco face legal, cultural and social challenges not experienced by other groups within Morocco. 

Documenting the lived experiences of sexual and gender minorities in Morocco, our ‘OUT in Morocco' research worked with Ishtar MENA Analytics and local Moroccan partners, GAFM, Atyaf and Talay’an to map out their human rights and development needs.  

“The catastrophic economic fallout on the country's economy increases social pressure and violence against minorities in addition to the exclusion of minorities from social assistance because of religious amalgams around their place in society” (Respondent from OUT in Morocco)

ReportOUT worked in close partnership with Ishtar MENA Analytics, and our in-country partners, over a period of nearly two years to document the lives of sexual and gender minorities. LGBTQ+ Moroccans live under a shadow of discrimination and persecuted, driven by hostility within family units as much as, if not more so than societal pressures.  


Through our close partnership with our partners, we are proud to have shone a light on these lived experiences. This research also demonstrates how much more needs to be done by the Moroccan state to secure the basic rights of sexual and gender minorities within Morocco to achieve the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals, which the Moroccan government has signed up to. 

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Please read and download this report (opens in PDF) by clicking here

The key findings of our ‘OUT in Morocco’ research, found that  


  • Only 27% of respondents to our study have come out about their sexual and gender identity to their family, with an almost identical percentage suffering physical violence at the hands of a family member.  Over half of those ‘out’ to families have suffered some form of so-called conversion therapy, including pseudo-exorcisms and beatings. 


  • Despite this, 57% of respondents still live with their family, indicating a level of vulnerability and dependence. 


  • Abuse of sexual and gender minorities in commonplace for our survey respondents with different forms of abuse reported as: 

  • Online abuse (83.3% of respondents have suffered) 

  • Verbal abuse (66.6%)  

  • Threat of violence (46%) 

  • Threat of sexual attacks (31.6%) 

  • Physically violent attacks (26.6%)  

  • Sexual attacks (23.3%) 

  • Police violence (13.5%) 


  • The majority of abuse reported came at the hands of family members and strangers rather than police or state authorities. 


  • Sexual and gender minorities have created their own (relatively) safe environments in confiding in their closest friends (71% know about their sexual orientation or gender identity).  72% of respondents consider social media a safe space whilst considering dating apps as largely unsafe.   


  • That said, sexual and gender minorities in Morocco do not consider themselves to have nearly sufficient resources to sustain an overall community (scored an average 2.32/10) due largely to the safe zone for them to be ‘out’ being so small. 


  • Opinions are split on the overall safety of the internet for sexual and gender minorities in Morocco to gather as an overall SOGIESC community (average score of 5.47/10) but it is considered a considerably safer environment than Morocco as a country, which scored only 2.52/10 as a safe place for sexual and gender minorities. 

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