LGBT activists will receive compensation for discrimination at the labor market

On August 4, Olga Sakhanova, a judge from the Pervomaiskii Court District of Omsk ruled in favor of LGBT-activist Edward Zavialov. Zavialov filed a case against unfair treatment and workplace discrimination, as he was denied hire because of his “feminine tone of voice and gestures” and because he is “too neat”. Activists were awarded RUR 30,000 based on the Court’s decision. Upon filing a case, Zavialov demanded a compensation of RUR 50,000 and requested for him to be hired. His second request was not satisfied.

It is important to note that in this case a compensation awarded by the Court is higher than usual. In 2015, Zhelezhnodorozhnii Court District of Novosibirsk ruled in favor of Anna Balash’s complaint, who was also denied hiring. She was awarded only RUR 1,000.

Zavialov himself says he is “exceptionally happy about this triumph of justice”. “The Court was evaluating my case for more than a month. It received a lot of media attention, not only in Russia. I read plenty of negative things about myself. And yet I am happy, happy that the Court ruled in my favor. Even though my demands were satisfied only partially, they still were satisfied.”

In May 2017, Edward Zavialov was denied a position of a sales assistant in an Omsk-based LLC “Hardcore”. “Hardcore” issued an official document regarding this denial. The document states the following: “Your behavior (feminine tone of voice and gestures) and your appearance (excessive grooming and defiant clothing) suggest that you belong to the LGBT community. With your appearance, you promote non-traditional sexual relations.” Natalia Chernorai, the head of the HR office, signed this document.

The data collected by the Russian LGBT Network’s monitoring program shows that in 2016 at least 653 people experienced various job-related complications based on their sexual orientation and/or gender identity:  more than 500 people reported that they were fired; 49 people – that they were denied hiring.