Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a new legislation that deals a significant blow to the LGBTQ+ community in the country. The act, passed unanimously by both houses of parliament, strictly prohibits individuals from officially or medically changing their gender, further marginalizing Russia’s embattled LGBTQ+ population.
Comprehensive Ban on Gender Changes and More
- The new legislation imposes a comprehensive ban on various aspects related to gender changes.
- It prohibits any medical interventions aimed at altering a person’s sex and also bars individuals from changing their gender in official documents or public records.
- Only medical intervention to treat congenital anomalies will be allowed under the new law.
- Furthermore, the legislation goes beyond restricting gender changes and extends its impact to marriages and family planning.
- It annuls marriages in which one of the partners has undergone a gender change, and it outright prevents transgender individuals from becoming foster or adoptive parents.
Preserving “Traditional Values” and Combating “Western Ideology”
- The ban on gender changes and the wider crackdown on LGBTQ+ rights in Russia are rooted in the Kremlin’s pursuit of preserving what it deems as the nation’s “traditional values.”
- Lawmakers argue that the legislation is essential to protect Russia against what they view as “western anti-family ideology.”
- Some legislators have even labeled gender transitioning as “pure satanism,” highlighting the extent of the conservative stance taken by the government.
A Decade of LGBTQ+ Crackdown in Russia
- Russia’s stringent measures against LGBTQ+ individuals have been on the rise over the past decade.
- It began with President Putin’s emphasis on promoting “traditional family values,” a stance that found support from the Russian Orthodox Church.
- In 2013, the Kremlin passed legislation that forbade any public endorsement of “nontraditional sexual relations” among minors.
- Subsequently, in 2020, Putin introduced constitutional reforms that banned same-sex marriages.
- Last year, another law was enacted to suppress the “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations” among adults, further tightening the grip on LGBTQ+ rights in the country.