Movie star, philanthropist and Founder of The Hawn Foundation, Goldie Hawn is sending a message of support to LGBT Nigerians after meeting with Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan. Yesterday Hawn tweeted a picture of the meeting then quickly apologized stating she was unaware of the anti-LGBT bill he signed earlier this month. Last night she tweeted that she was horrified, embarrassed, and misinformed.
The Academy-Award winning actress also provided the following statement today:
"Like too many Americans I had no idea what sort of persecution and discrimination LGBT people in Nigeria are going through. I am shocked, appalled and heartbroken. STOP these atrocities!"
The "Same Sex Prohibition Bill," provides sentences of 14 years in prison for same-sex couples. The law also enforces a 10-year sentence for anyone that participates in a marriage ceremony for a same-sex couple or offers public support for LGBT people. Dozens of people have already been arrested under the law, with angry mobs recently demanding the executions of 11 men arrested for belonging to LGBT organizations.
As Goldie Hawn stated, many Americans are unaware of the atrocities faced by LGBT people in countries like Nigeria, Uganda and Russia, and the draconian laws being passed in order to create an anti-LGBT climate and spread false information against the community. GLAAD is working with advocates in those countries to elevate their stories and raise awareness around the horrifying conditions in which they live simply because they are LGBT.