Liudmila Romodina and Oleg Klyuenkov stopped by the Press Herald newsroom studio, while the pair were in the midst of a weeklong trip to Portland, to talk to staff writer Ray Routhier about their work in Russia advocating for gay rights.
The two are both members of Perspective, a gay-rights organization in Portland’s sister city of Archangel.
Two years ago Archangel officials enacted an anti-gay law that became a model for federal Russian anti-gay laws now drawing criticism from around the world.
Although they are not official members of the sister city program, Romodina and Klyuenkov said they came to Portland to make people here aware of what is going on in Archangel and to try to create a constructive dialogue that will eventually lead to reforms in Russia.
Both said they want to work with their own government to foster reform.