Sign the Petition to Navanethem Pillay, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights


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This petition closed 6 months ago


Essentially, Anti-LGBTQ propaganda laws empower Russian police and citizens to brutalize lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer individuals, and straight allies. Sign this petition to pressure the U.N. Human Rights leader to order sanctions (penalties for violating Universal Human Rights) against Russia and Pres. Putin.

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As the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Navanethem Pillay has a proven track record of supporting equal rights regardless of gender or sexual orientation (see official bio). Pillay and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) work closely with U.N. member nations to identify universal human rights, educate, and empower stakeholders to uphold these principles (read more about the OHCHR).


Russia adopted the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights which includes Freedom of Speech and Freedom from Fear as two of the Four Freedoms. By adopting the Universal Declaration, Russia has agreed to abide by its legal requirements and consequences. Based on this mutual agreement, the U.N. has every right to enact sanctions against Russia for violating the Universal Declaration.

The anti-gay propaganda laws do not explicitly declare the right for police and/or the public to attack lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer individuals. It would seem unreasonable to conclude that the propaganda laws directly violate human rights in the sense of personal safety. However, these laws explicitly prohibit freedom of speech regarding a specific topic - sexual orientation apart from heterosexuality. Consequently, not only has the LGBTQ community lost this freedom, the community has received increased persecution from an already present public attitude against homosexuality. Thus, the LGBTQ community lives in a cultural climate of fear.


If one segment of society loses its universal freedoms, then all segments of society are in danger of the same threat. The Universal Declaration doesn't exist to define a universal moral code, but to ensure everyone has equal access to a basic set of freedoms necessary for a happy, successful life without infringing on the rights of other individuals.

To some, the anti-gay propaganda laws may seem harmless. On the contrary, they reinforce the consequences of heteronormativity. It seems like those who support the anti-gay propaganda laws and/or those who believe those laws do not threaten human rights are unaware of the collateral damage such support and beliefs cause against LGBTQ individuals - especially youth. If LGBTQ youth do not believe there is hope for having a happy, successful future similar to their straight peers, then they are more likely to experience higher rates of depression and suicide (see Prejudice, social stress, and mental health in lesbian, gay, and bisexual populations: Conceptual issues and research evidence PDF).
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