Volker Beck (born 12 December 1960 in Stuttgart) is a German politician. He is a sitting member of parliament for the Green Party in the Bundestag. Beck served as the Green Party Speaker for Legal Affairs from 1994–2002, and as the Green Party Chief Whip in the Bundestag since then. He represents Cologne and was reelected as MP and whip in September 2005.
Beck is openly gay and served as spokesman of the Association of Lesbians and Gays in Germany (Lesben- und Schwulenverband in Deutschland) LSVD for over ten years. He is a supporter of same-sex marriage and has been referred to as the "Father of the German Registered Partnership Act".
Between 2001 and 2004 he was chief negotiator for his party on the new immigration law coming into to force 2005. He is publicly known for being a very tough negotiator.
In 2003, the German Bundestag decided on his initiative that the Federal Republic of Germany will erect a national memorial in the centre of Berlin for homosexuals persecuted by the Nazi Party.
In 2006, he sponsored an anti-discrimination act in civil law and at the workplace, outlawing discrimination based on race, ethnic origin, sex, sexual identity, religion, age, and disability.
On 27 May 2006, Beck was attacked and injured during a Gay Rights demonstration in Moscow, called Moscow Pride. His attack as well as his participation at the Moscow Pride Festival is featured in the documentary Moscow Pride '06.
On May 2007 he was arrested and put in a bus in front of the Moscow City Hall by the police. He had wanted to hand over a petition signed by several Members of Parliament at Moscow City Hall. He was attacked and had eggs thrown at his head. As in 2007, his partner Jacques Teyssier tried to protect Mr. Beck from attacks by anti gay rights protesters. Beck spoke in favor of continuing European Union sanctions on Uzbekistan, originally instated after the Uzbek government did not allow an international investigation of the Andijan massacre, on 17 October 2006.
He is also an important figure in recompense for victims of Nazism. He negotiated the foundation Remembrance, Responsibility and Future (slave labor recompensation). In 2008, he claimed that the German Parliament should raise more money to fight against right wing extremists.
In 2001 the INGLO honoured his work for the gay and lesbian civil rights movement in Germany with the Like-a-rock Award. In the same year the Berlin Gay Pride festival honored him with the Rainbow Award.
On October 3, 2002, he was honored by the then German President Johannes Rau on the advice of Jewish organisations (the Central Council of Jews in Germany and the Jewish Claims Conference) as Knight of the Distinguished Service Cross. Beck also supported the Holocaust memorial and is a member of the Federal Foundation which erected the memorial.
- "German Green MP Volker Beck mourns his life partner Jacques Teyssier". Retrieved 20 August 2009.
- "Nationalist Protesters Attack Gay Rights Activists in Moscow". Fox News. 28 May 2006. Retrieved 20 August 2009.
- "German Stance on Moscow Gay Crackdown Under Debate". Retrieved 20 August 2009.
- "Moscow Pride : a second stonewall took place". Retrieved 20 August 2009.
- "German Lawmaker Sees No Rights Progress In Uzbekistan". Retrieved 20 August 2009.
- "Grünen-Politiker fordert mehr Geld im "Kampf gegen Rechts"". Retrieved 20 August 2009.
- "Volker Beck, b. December 12, 196". Retrieved 20 August 2009.
- "Volker Beck Auszeichnungen". Retrieved 20 August 2009.
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- Homepage of Volker Beck
- Online Biography about him on the website of the Green Parliamentary Group in the German Bundestag