Lithuania’s Social Democratic Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevičius abstained from commenting on the proposal by the MP Petras Gražulis to introduce administrative liability for any public denigration of the “constitutional family values”. However, the Prime Minister of Lithuania insists that „society must conform to the norms of decency“ or otherwise „claim responsibility“.
„I really can not answer this question now. The bill requires deeper investigation contentwise. I do believe, however, that respect, tolerance and cultural values towards a fellow person must be respected and complied with. The members of the society must claim responsibility for their actions once certain norms of decency are being transgressed,“ claimed Mr. Butkevičius during a „News Radio“ interview, commenting the proposed amendment, which does not differ from the so-called “homosexual propaganda” law in Russia.
According to the proposal, such actions as carrying out public speeches, demonstrating goods, posters, slogans and audio-visual materials, as well as organizing public events such as the Baltic Pride March for Equality would result in an administrative fine ranging from EUR 300 to EUR 900 and in case of repeated violation – from EUR 900 to EUR 1800. Due to its unlimited scope, this legislative motion is extremely dangerous for the LGBT* movement in Lithuania.
The draft amendment to the Code of Administrative Violations No. XIP-4490(3), which seeks to introduce administrative liability for any public denigration of the “constitutional family values” was condemned by the international LGBTI organization “ILGA-Europe”, the European Parliament’s Intergroup on LGBTI rights, the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe Nils Muižnieks and international LGBTIQ youth and student organisation IGLYO.
On November 12, 2015 the notorious “anti-gay propaganda” bill was removed from the Lithuanian Parliament’s agenda for the time being. 65 members of the Lithuanian Parliament voted for the proposition to remove the consideration of the draft amendment to the Code of Administrative Violations No. XIP-4490(3), which seeks to introduce administrative liability for any public denigration of the “constitutional family values” from the Parliament’s today’s agenda, 10 voted against, 25 abstained. In essence this means that the bill can reappear on the agenda at any time.