Russian lawmakers have proposed doubling fines for exposing youth to so-called "LGBTQ propaganda."
According to Reuters, proposed new legislation unveiled publicly this week would also make any pro-LGBTQ event or act an "administrative offense."
In 2013, the Russian government approved a law that bans the "promotion of non-traditional sexual relations" to minors. The "gay propaganda" law was widely seen as an attempt to crack down on LGBTQ rights activists. Under the law, the activists are unable to legally protest in a public space where minors might be present.
Under the proposed legislation, fines for entities would increase to 2 million rubles – 5 million rubles if the offense took place online or in the media – and to 400,000 rubles for individuals. Foreigners who violate the law would face deportation from Russia.
Alexander Khinshtein, who heads the Russian State Duma's committee on information policy, told Reuters that lawmakers are also considering extending the law to include "any propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations, regardless of age." That is, Russia is considering banning all positive public discussions involving sexual orientation and gender identity.
Russia ranks third from last on ILGA-Europe's "Rainbow Europe" index of Europe's most LGBTQ-friendly nations.
This article appeared at On Top Magazine and has been published here with permission.