Immigration Blog

Alexander J. Segal's picture

New Rules - New Hopes

After the reports of the particular hardships faced by the LGBT applicants for asylum in the United States have surfaced in the media, and while the situation with the LGBT rights and freedoms continues to deteriorate in many parts of the world, the Obama administration has issued new rules, which, hopefully, will make the perilous journey of the persecuted LGBT persons towards safety in the United States a little easier.

Alexander J. Segal's picture

The List of Pain and Shame: State-Sponsored Homophobia Around The World

At least 86 member states of the United Nations still criminalize consensual same sex acts among adults. Among those, 7 have legal provisions with death penalty as punishment. If you identify yourself as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender/transsexual, and if you are a citizen of one of the countries listed below, you may be eligible for asylum in the United States. As an applicant for asylum, you will need to explain your fear of prosecution and persecution in your homeland on account of your sexual orientation and/or gender identity.

Alexander J. Segal's picture

No Love From Russia - If You're Gay

On March 7, 2011, the governor of Saint Petersburg, Russia’s second-largest city and (once) its most civilized, Westernized, and tolerant metropolis, signed into law the bill against “propaganda of pedophilia, homosexuality, lesbianism, and transgednerism to minors.”  When introduced to the Saint Petersburg legislative assembly in the fall of 2011, this infamous bill has caused international uproar among LGBT activists and human rights defenders. Several international petitions with hundreds of thousands of signatures were delivered to the Petersburg’s law makers, asking them to abandon the draconian measure which was to restrict the freedom of expression for the city’s already embattled LGBT community, as well as further deprive gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender residents of Saint Petersburg of their human dignity by equating their life styles to those of criminal sexual offenders such as pedophiles. The majority of the law makers, most of them members of Vladimir Putin’s United Russia party, ignored these pleas, and adopted the law which was cheered by the officials of the Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) and, even more frighteningly, by some of the federal officials, who suggested that such a measure could also be implemented on a national level.