Minneapolis City Council Passes Resolution Opposing Anti-Homosexuality Bill in Uganda

For Immediate Release

Media Contacts:

Hossein Alizadeh
IGLHRC
212-430-6016
halizadeh@iglhrc.org
Pedro Julio Serrano
The Task Force
646.358.1479
pserrano@thetaskforce.org
Cam Gordon
Minneapolis City Council
(612) 673-2202
Cam.Gordon@ci.minneapolis.mn.us

(December 18, 2009) The city of Minneapolis, Minn., a sister city of Kampala, Uganda, passed a resolution on Friday, Dec. 18 condemning Uganda's proposed Anti-Homosexuality Bill. Council members Scott Benson and Cam Gordon co-authored the resolution in light of the negative impact the law would have on all citizens of Kampala, pointing out that the bill "targets lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Ugandans, their advocates and defenders and anyone who fails to report them to the authorities."

The resolution amended the Policy Initiatives section of the Fiscal Year 2010 Federal Agenda for the City of Minneapolis to insert a section entitled "Human Rights Restrictions in Uganda." Noting that the Anti-Homosexuality Bill "[w]ould criminalize such activities as funding LGBT organizations, publishing or broadcasting or marketing materials on homosexuality," the Resolution affirms that, "[t]he City of Minneapolis opposes this legislation."

On October 14, 2009, the Anti-Homosexuality Bill was introduced in Uganda's Parliament. In its current form, the proposed bill would:

  • Imprison anyone convicted of "the offense of homosexuality" for life;
  • Punish "aggravated homosexuality" – including repeat offenders, or anyone who is HIV positive and engages in same-sex activity – with the death penalty;
  • Forbid the "promotion of homosexuality," and jail defenders of LGBT rights;
  • Require reporting anyone known to be lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender within 24 hours or face up to three years in prison.

The resolution passed by the City Council of Minneapolis demonstrates the still growing international opposition to the Anti-Homosexuality Bill and solidarity with LGBT people worldwide.

Other sister cities of Kampala include Kigali, Rwanda; Rajkot, India; Ashkelon, Israel; and Hudson, USA.

Text of Resolution:

(Download PDF)

Resolution of the City of Minneapolis

By Benson, Gordon, Glidden, Hofstede, Remington, Hodges, Colvin Roy, Ostrow

Amending the Policy Initiatives section of the Fiscal Year 2010 Federal Agenda for the City of Minneapolis by inserting a section entitled "Human Rights Restrictions in Uganda."

Whereas, the Uganda Legislature is considering a law that would strengthen penalties against the promotion of homosexuality, and

Whereas, Bill Number 18, the Anti-Homosexuality Bill of 2009 targets lesbian, gay and transgender Ugandans, their advocates and defenders and anyone who fails to report them to the authorities; and

Whereas, the legislation would criminalize such activities as funding LGBT organizations, publishing or broadcasting or marketing materials on homosexuality; and

Whereas, a person guilty of promoting homosexuality could be subject to a fine or imprisonment;

Now, Therefore, Be It Resolved by The City Council of The City of Minneapolis:

That the Policy Initiatives section of the Fiscal Year 2010 Federal Agenda for the City of Minneapolis be further amended by inserting a section entitled "Human Rights Restrictions in Uganda" stating as follows:

The Uganda Legislature is considering a law that would strengthen penalties against the promotion of homosexuality. Bill Number 18, the Anti-Homosexuality Bill of 2009 targets lesbian, gay and transgender Ugandans, their advocates and defenders and anyone who fails to report them to the authorities. The legislation would criminalize such activities as funding LGBT organizations, publishing or broadcasting or marketing materials on homosexuality. A person guilty of promoting homosexuality could be subject to a fine or imprisonment. The City of Minneapolis opposes this legislation.

Media Contacts:

International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission
Hossein Alizadeh
212-430-6016
halizadeh@iglhrc.org

National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
Pedro Julio Serrano
646-358-1479
pserrano@theTaskForce.org

Minneapolis City Council
Cam Gordon, Minneapolis City Council Member, Second Ward
612-673-2202 (office), 612-296-0579 (cell)
Cam.Gordon@ci.minneapolis.mn.us


The International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC) is a leading international organization dedicated to advancing human rights for everyone, everywhere to end discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. www.iglhrc.org

The Institute for Welcoming Resources, a program of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, is located in Minneapolis, Minn., and has joined with many people of faith across the world to condemn this immoral bill. The mission of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force is to build the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community from the ground up. We do this by training activists, organizing broad-based campaigns to defeat anti-LGBT referenda and advance pro-LGBT legislation, and by building the organizational capacity of our movement. www.theTaskForce.org