The blog of the 'There is a Better Way' campaign by STUC staff about policy issues that are, or should be, in the news and guest contributors on issues of social justice. Written from a STUC perspective, contributions will often cover areas where there is yet no settled STUC policy and go into areas in more detail than our formal decisions. We welcome debate and we don’t expect everyone to agree with us, but we will remove any comments that are offensive, irrelevant or otherwise annoy.
Friday, 7 February 2014
Challenging Russian homophobia as the world prepares for the Sochi Olympics
It’s been a
momentous and historic week for equality in Scotland.The passing of the Marriage and Civil
Partnership (Scotland) Bill represents a significant landmark in Scottish
legislation and mirrors changes in social attitudes which have been on an upward
curve since the early 1980’s.
Within a few
short decades we have moved away from the criminalisation of homosexuality to
accepting LGBT people as being rightfully able to express their love in
marriage just as other couples have long taken for granted.
rightly it is a time for celebration.
we reflect on a victory, in many parts of the world Human and Equal rights for
LGBT people are not advancing and in many worrying developments gains that had
been made are being rescinded with devastating consequences.
The eyes of
the world are now focused on Russia as it gears up for the winter Olympics in
Sochi and with this come the added scrutiny of Russia’s duplicitous human
introduction of a federal law banning the “propaganda of non-traditional sexual
relationships” to minors has made it virtually illegal to place same-sex
relationships on a level footing with heterosexual ones or to even promote LGBT rights.
has been to further isolate the LGBT community whilst reinforcing an underlying
intolerance towards homosexuality, a trend which has been on the rise.This coupled with reports of increased
arrests of activists and a stark rise in hate crime motivated by homophobia has
served to make an already deteriorating situation worse for LGBT people in
LGBT Workers Committee shares the concerns of civil rights groups and
campaigners in expressing our disgust at the scenes of violence, reports of
torture and ultimately deaths of LGBT individuals and activists.
allow Sochi and the winter Olympics to be used as a mechanism for the Russian
authorities to attempt to sanitise its human rights record.It is vital that we show support during and
after the games to enable the LGBT community in Russia to fight this
legislation whilst encouraging the Government to refrain from propagating a
hostile public perception based on prejudice.To this end we support the actions of activists and those athletes who
are openly questioning this repressive legislation and ask that supporters in
the UK contact their MP to lobby the Russian ambassador.