HRC Blog

Russian State Duma Passes Anti-LGBT Bill

Post submitted by Joyce Wu, HRC Communications Intern

The lower house of Russian Parliament today passed legislation banning the distribution of any materials thought to promote the LGBT community.

The law claims to protect children from “harm to their health and well-being” by punishing pro-LGBT organizations with fines of up to 1 million rubles (around $31,000) or suspension for up to 90 days. Individuals who endorse so-called “non-traditional sexual relations” also face fines of up to 5,000 rubles, with the fines for government officials being 10 times that, and foreigners can be detained for up to 15 days and deported.

Russian LGBT advocates protested in front of the Duma as legislators voted. Twenty-five were arrested and many more were beaten and bombarded with anti-LGBT slurs, rotten eggs and nettles.

The bill’s passage follows a recent slew of anti-LGBT incidents in Russia, including Moscow officials’ recent refusal to allow a pride parade in the city and the brutal murder of Vladislav Tornovoi, a gay man, last month.

In contrast, HRC's groundbreaking survey of LGBT youth shows that legislatively endorsed anti-LGBT bias leads to feelings of social ostracism and isolation, which can have a devastating impact on the overall health and wellbeing of LGBT youth.

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