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Russian MPs Seek Nationwide Ban On Child Beauty Pageants

Russian MPs Seek Nationwide Ban On Child Beauty Pageants February 15, 2014Leave a comment

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RUSSIA  —  Deputies representing conservative center and nationalist parties have proposed a bill to ban child participation in beauty pageants and introduce tough fines for lawbreakers.

Lawmakers from the United Russia party and the Liberal Democratic  party have already submitted the bill to the Lower House, the  State Duma press service reported on Friday.

The draft outlaws child participation in any event where they  will show themselves off and be judged on their appearance, if  this could harm the child’s health or development physically,  intellectually, psychically,and spiritually. Participation in  contests that could potentially lead to corruption of the young  is also banned. The authors explained the detailed definition was  because they did not want to stop contests for children which do  not include being judged by their appearance.

The violation of this rule would carry a large fine. Parents or  guardians who allow their children to participate in beauty  pageants would have to pay from 4000 to 5000 roubles ($114 –   $142). Officials who license such events face fines of between  40000 and 50000 ($1140-$1420) and companies organizing them –   from 800000 to 1 million roubles ($22800 – $28500). Also a court  could order such companies to suspend their work for up to three  months.

The bill introduces additional punishment for foreigners – apart  from fines, foreign citizens can be detained for up to 15 days,  and will be deported from the country.

The sponsors of the draft said in the explanatory note that  similar rules already exist in South Russia’s Krasnodar Region  and also in France.

In December last year St. Petersburg legislator Vitaly Milonov,  known for his staunch anti-gay stance,announced his intention to  press for a ban on child beauty pageants in the city. Milonov’s  yet unfinished bill will apparently allow participation in beauty  pageants only from the age of sixteen. Breaking the rule would be  the responsibility of event organizers and of the participants’   parents.

When promoting the move the lawmaker said that participation is  such contests not only harms the child’s psyche, but also  increases the danger of them becoming victims of paedophiles.

Commenting on the new federal bill Milonov welcomed the decision  as necessary, adding that many specialists claim that the growing  number of child beauty pageants “leads to the over 20-fold  increase in the number of people suffering from psychic  disorders.”

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