TO: Viktor Yanukovych, President of Ukraine

We citizens from across the European Union and the world urge you to denounce Law 8711. The arrival of the delegation on Justice and Security from the EU is the time to show that Ukraine takes human rights seriously. Ukraine must take a stand against shocking displays of violence such as that perpetuated against Svyatoslav Sheremet.

Photo: Pride organizers beaten in the streets of Kiev, Ukraine © Reuters

UPDATE October 2: It's back – in a last minute manoeuvre, homophobic MPs in Ukraine's Parliament advanced the gay gag rule. Now, we need as many people as possible to tell the Chairman of the Parliament to stop it – before it gets any further!


UPDATE July 10th: It started in May. Word leaked out that Ukrainian politicians were pushing forward a law that would silence straight and LGBT people from "promoting homosexuality" and even make it almost impossible to continue health prevention work fighting diseases like HIV. We partnered with two of Ukraine's LGBT organizations, Insight NGO and Fulcrum, to plan an immediate response.

With only a few days to act, All Out members swung into action and published an ad in Ukraine's largest English-language newspaper telling the President not to sign this bill. In just three days, over 75,000 people had taken a stand. But it was far from over. Euro 2012, Europe's biggest football tournament, was being co-hosted in Ukraine. Many countries were boycotting the games of their own national teams because of human rights violations on the part of Ukraine's government. Once again, All Out members made sure that LGBT rights - particularly Law 8711 - was at the top of the list of the reasons for these boycotts.

We joined forces with Marcus Urban, Europe's first out professional footballer, to live-tweet a tournament game between Ukraine and England. With millions of fans watching from around the world, the hash tag #Euro2012 was flooded with pro-gay and anti-Law 8711 messages. The story was covered across the globe - and the pressure kept on coming.

With Euro 2012 fever dying away, Law 8711 was brought to Parliament in the first week of July. In two days, over 1000 Europeans called their Foreign Office and asked them to contact Ukraine about Law 8711. And our petition almost doubled in size, swelling to over 120,000 signatures.

This iconic photo (right) was the very first call to action for All Out members. And now, it has become a signal of defiance to bullies and thugs - that they cannot silence people who are standing for equality. The man who was beaten in this photo was the organizer of Pride in Ukraine - an event that was cancelled only hours before it was due to start because of safety concerns. If Law 8711 passes in September - the very last chance politicians will have to push it through - these kinds of beatings will skyrocket. And there will be no way to label it as a hate crime.

At the very last minute - we got it done! Ukrainian parliamentarians removed the anti-gay law from the parliamentary agenda and the vote did not take place! Over 120,000 signatures, hundreds of calls, protests and hard work from activists in Ukraine were heard, and we could not have done it without you. Will you give to All Out to keep the momentum going?


UPDATE June 28th: We're launching call-in campaign across Europe right before Ukrainian Parliament brings the gay gag rule to vote. Click here to call your foreign affairs office now!

Ukraine's legislature is about to vote a brand new bill into law that will make it illegal to be gay or lesbian in public. President Viktor Yanukovych has the power to stop the law, but has chosen to stay silent on the growing anti-gay sentiment.

The President says a new alliance with the European Union is his #1 Priority. World leaders have been raising this issue at high level meetings; it's time to force the President to speak out against these laws.

Will you call on President Yanukovych to condemn the laws? Every single voice of opposition makes a real difference.

This is a campaign of the All Out Action Fund, a 501(c)(4) nonprofit organization.