The UK’s parliament has voted to send financial aid to Stonewall and other LGBT advocacy groups supporting Russia’s LGBT beleaguered community.
Culture Secretary and Equalities Minister Maria Miller, the conservative politician behind marriage equality legislation in England and Wales told the BBC:
“We are already putting in place additional support to make sure that gay rights organizations have got the sort of support and expertise that I think can make a real difference with the work they are doing on the ground in Russia.”
There are restrictions in Russia that make it illegal for foreign entities to directly fund protest or advocacy groups. Money has to be funneled through non-governmental organizations, or charity groups. For that reason, they will increase their funding to UK groups like Stonewall who have a working relationship with Russian LGBT groups.
Secretary Miller also announced she would be joining the official UK delegation headed to Sochi, telling reporters she hoped the International Olympic Committee would take a “common sense” approach to any athletes who used the spotlight of the Sochi Games to raise the issue of gay rights. This remark seemed to be a challenge to IOC president Thomas Bach, who said this week that Olympians would be allowed to make political points in press conferences, but anyone protesting on the podium or in official venues could be disciplined.
Photo via Wikipedia
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