LONDON — The Russian embassy in London has issued a warning to parents who send their children to summer schools in the United Kingdom, saying alleging that their children may be placed in “inappropriate housing conditions,” including with “families of homosexuals.”
The warning, posted on its website Tuesday, said the embassy received complaints that children who were placed with British families were occasionally denied food, that there have been cases of removal of the child from school due to minor violations of the daily routine, and that there were examples of children placed “families of homosexuals.”
Diana Lowe, executive director of the Accreditation Body for Language Services, told the Telegraph, “We receive very few complaints. It’s fine for the Russian embassy to warn parents but I would urge them to take up these complaints with the schools in question and the accrediting body, if they haven’t done so already.”
On the question of children staying with gay parents, Lowe said, “It’s a delicate question. People who place students should be culturally aware and they should inform the student of the profile of the family. But there’s nothing wrong with a gay couple per se, and some of them are among the kindest hosts.”
Homosexuality and pedophilia are often conflated in Russia with a majority of Russians expressing disapproval of equality rights for LGBT citizens.
Legislation recently passed by several Russian Regions and cities including St. Petersburg banning “promotion of homosexuality,” is being decried and challenged by LGBTQ advocacy groups.
The summer sessions are offered by Russian agencies working in partnership with the schools. A typical course of study costs the families around $3,200 per month which includes boarding costs.