Russian LGBT Sport Federation organizes sport events for the Russian LGBT community. Goal is to meet each other through sports, more tolerance towards sexual minorities, increased self-acceptance within the LGBT community and for some even an incentive to come out. RLSF has organized 19 sport events during the last three years in both the Saint Petersburg and Moscow regions. It currently has over 500 members.
Since 2010, it has become increasingly difficult to organize LGBT events in Russia. At the beginning of 2013, president Putin signed a bill that bans the distribution of propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations to minors also known as the gay propaganda bill. This makes it almost impossible for the LGBT community to speak out in public, without being put in jail or getting a fine. All of this hasn’t stopped the Russian LGBT Sport Federation (RLSF) from organizing events.
Sport Votes for Tolerance is a project that included two LGBT sport events. A volleyball tournament in October and a badminton tournament in November 2013, both held in Moscow. Each tournament had a press conference with the participation of top level Russian sportsmen and representatives of sport authorities. The project goal was to demonstrate that sport, which is a human right too, and stigmatization of LGBT people by antigay legislation cannot stand together.