Russian lawmakers have submitted a bill to the State Duma, the lower house of the Russian Parliament, to expand the country’s 2013 law prohibiting the “promotion” of “non-traditional sexual relations” to minors.
The bill, submitted Monday, would ban “the propaganda of denial of family values and non-traditional sexual relations,” and apply irrespective of age. The explanatory note to the bill states:
Public approval and recognition of such relationships is dangerous not only for children and young people who are not yet able to critically consider the information that is freely available to them every day, but also for the whole society, as it puts questions of demography and economic growth in the future under certain hit.
The prohibition of propaganda does not deprive citizens of the opportunity and right to determine their sexual preference and orientation, does not allow discrimination, however, does not give the right to public approval of such relations and the dissemination of so-called “new” values that carry hidden threats to society.
In a statement by Aleksandr Khinshtein, Chairman of the Committee of the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation on Information Policy, Information Technology and Communications, he said that the committee was proposing to “extend the ban on such propaganda, regardless of the age of the audience (offline, media, Internet, social networks, as well as online cinemas),” and “establish a separate, even more stringent responsibility for promoting pedophilia.”
Dissemination of such “propaganda” is currently subject to a fine of up to 1 million rubles (approximately USD 18,100) or up to 15 days in jail.
The bill will have to pass four rounds of voting in the two houses of the Russian parliament and be signed by President Vladimir Putin before it becomes law.