Russian LGBTQ+ group holds Coney Island march in support of Ukraine

The march drew over 100 demonstrators who also have roots in Russia and Ukraine.

News 12 Staff

Mar 19, 2022, 10:14 PM

Updated 816 days ago

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A Russian LGBTQ+ organization held a march in Coney Island Saturday to show its support of Ukraine during the war crisis in that country.
The march drew over 100 demonstrators who also have roots in Russia and Ukraine.
To people like organizer Ezra Erikson, who was born in Russia, the country's invasion of Ukraine feels extra personal.
"I moved because I'm gay and I didn't feel safe in Russia, and if we, as minorities, as LGBTQ communities, want rights in Russia, for us, success of Ukraine in that regard means our own success," Erikson said.
"People in Russia know firsthand what it is like to be gay in Russia," said Rachel Blackburn, of Harlem.
The march started on the Coney Island boardwalk and into Brighton Beach -- an area filled with Russian-speaking immigrants, many of whom still get their news from state-run media back home, organizers said.
Demonstrators emphasized that any Russians who live in America that aren't sure which side to be on are the ones they need to reach.
"Our goal is to say it loudly that Putin is a war criminal and hopefully talk to people that live here and tell them that no human being can support what's going on," Erikson said.
"The only people who can really truly do something are the Russian people. They're the only people who are going to have any kind of influence on Putin," Blackburn said.


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