Members of Madison Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) stand with sexual minorities inside and outside the United States to be free from state-sponsored oppression, incarceration and violence based on their sexual orientation. As Friends (Quakers) we are called to “answer that of God in everyone.”
We call for an end to persecution of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) people in Cameroon, Chechnya, Indonesia, Russia, Uganda, Yemen and all other nations that have enacted laws or continue to support policies of intimidation, oppression, incarceration and violence towards such individuals.
Recently, news reports have exposed a campaign of violence and oppression against gay men in Chechnya. They are reported to have been arrested, held against their will, tortured and, in some cases, murdered with government support, and without trial. This policy appears to have the support of the government of Russia, and to employ concentration camps to hold these men.
We oppose these policies, and we voice support for projects to assist LGBTIQ individuals to escape that violence, such as Rainbow Railroad and the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA).
Madison Friends Meeting has a history of support for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer communities. With this statement, we continue this tradition of standing up for LGBTIQ rights and express the same wish for peace and tolerance to sexual minorities in other nations. We invite other faith communities to join with us.