They did it. Conservative lawmakers in Saint Petersburg just passed the notorious „propaganda“ law to silence any reading, writing, speech or debate on anything „gay.“
The goal? To make LGBT people disappear.
But the fight is far from over. The bill won’t become law until it’s signed by the Governor. St. Petersburg is one of Russia’s number one tourist destinations. That’s why an international storm of bad publicity will force the Governor to think twice about the cost of signing this bill.
We have less than a week to act: tell the Governor of St. Petersburg that a city that muzzles artists, writers, musicians, citizens and visitors isn’t a city you plan to visit.
Conservatives in St. Petersburg passed this „gay gag rule“ despite condemnation from world leaders – and even the country’s own international treaty obligations respecting freedom of expression. But at the same time, Russian leaders recently announced that they want to invest $11 billion dollars to build their international reputation and attract tourists from around the world. St. Petersburg, Russia’s cosmopolitan „window to the west“ is key to that strategy.
But they can’t have it both ways – a thriving tourist economy can’t coexist with a new law that will muzzle artists, writers, musicians and regular citizens who live in – or visit – the city.
Today the conservative Christian Democrats – members of the governing coalition in Sweden and primary obstacle to ending the policy of forced sterilizations – reversed course and announced that they’ll be supporting a ban on the practice.
„Hi, my name is Love, I’m from Sweden and I’m trans. That means I’m born in a female body but my heart says I’m a man. I’m speaking out today because the Swedish government is forcing thousands of people like me to make an impossible choice.
If I need to change the gender on my identity card to reflect my true self, just a small change from an „F“ to an „M“, my country will force me to be sterilized. I can either be represented correctly or have my basic human rights violated. That is not a fair choice. I’m at a protest today in front of the Parliament to ask for the law to be changed and this barbaric practice to end.“
This morning, St. Petersburg legislators passed the 2nd reading of the outrageous „propaganda“ bill that will silence millions of Russian LGBT voices. Our friend Polina reports that we still have time to call our world leaders — the final vote will come next week. Call your foreign affairs office now, and spread the word HERE.
The Russian law to silence LGBT people is back — and we need to act now.
Lawmakers are about to vote on bill that will make it illegal for any person to write a book, publish an article or speak in public about being gay, lesbian, bi or transgender. And this is just the beginning – if the law passes in St. Petersburg, officials have threatened to take it nationwide.
Activists in St. Petersburg are rushing to organize a public protest against the bill, but no matter where you are, you can stand with them. Join this call to leaders around the world to reach out to their counterparts in the Russian government – and ask them to reject this discriminatory and anti-democratic law.
A law which outlaws „homosexual propaganda“ has been approved by parliamentarians in St Petersburg – a move that has outraged rights activists in Russia and across the world.
„Propaganda“ is defined by the bill as „enticements, positive opinions and comments that promote non-traditional sexual and family relations to minors“. The MP behind it said the legislation would target „themed“ clubs for teenagers, and the spreading of information about homosexuality on social networks.
The law would ban the dissemination of information „which could cause damage to the health or moral and spiritual development of minors, including by inducing them to form warped perceptions that traditional and non-traditional married relations are equally socially acceptable“.