Cotonou - Post Report Question and Answers

Is this a good city for LGBT expatriates? Why or why not?

The government of Benin accredits LGBT couples and expat LGBT couples are widely accepted, but the local LGBT community is underground and not readily accepted. - Aug 2018

I think it's fine, as long as you are not very open. There is prejudice and discrimination in Benin. - Jan 2017

NO. Unless you want to hide who you are. People here are extremely prejudiced. - Oct 2015

Our gay friends were happy in Cotonou but homosexuality is not openly accepted in the local culture. - Jun 2015

It's not the worst, but don't plan on participating in any pride parades. The north of the country is predominately Muslim, while the south is Christian, and people take their religion very seriously in Benin. However, I've seen a few instances of like-minded folks being able to find each other here. - Aug 2014

Yes. - Jul 2013

I've known gay and lesbian expats who have had perfectly fine experiences here. I haven't heard of any outright discrimination, but at the same time there is no active gay and lesbian community to my knowledge, so it depends what you're looking for. - May 2013

I doubt that it is ideal, just because the expat social scene is so small to begin with, but there were gay expats here in the past and they managed to create a pretty active social life for themselves. - Mar 2013

Beninese are socially and religiously conservative and LGBT issues are not openly discussed. However, and unlike neighboring Nigeria, nobody is trying to get anti-gay laws passed here in Benin. The Government of Benin is accrediting the same-sex partners of foreign diplomats. I don’t think that any of the gay or lesbian officers at the U.S. Embassy have experienced any hostility or discrimination. - Dec 2011

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