UOC hierarch offers VR Speaker to overhaul antichurch laws

Metropolitan Clement (Vecheria) of Nizhyn and Pryluky took part in a meeting with Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Dmitry Razumkov. Photo: news.church.ua

The bishop and clergyman of the UOC took part in a meeting of the AUCCRO with Dmitry Razumkov regarding anti-church bills.

On July 28, 2020, Metropolitan Clement of Nizhyn and Pryluky drew the attention of the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Dmitry Razumkov to the threats and problems that may arise as a result of adopting anti-church bills. This was announced by the Information and Education Department.

Metropolitan Clement had a talk with the Speaker of the Verkhovna Rada during the meeting of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations. The event was also attended by the Head of the Legal Department of the UOC, Archpriest Alexander Bakhov.

The hierarch of the UOC noted that the development of a law on military chaplaincy may lead to discrimination against the canonical Church. Concerns were also raised about the possible ratification of the Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention and Combating of Violence against Women and Domestic Violence.

Metropolitan Clement also spoke about the danger posed by the draft laws "On Media", on juvenile justice, on amendments to some legislative acts of Ukraine regarding the withdrawal of a minor from the criminal justice system, as well as on "Amendments to the Law of Ukraine ‘On ensuring equal rights and opportunities for women and men’ to conduct a gender audit".

The bishop also made a number of proposals regarding the draft Labor Code of Ukraine.

Metropolitan Clement is confident that be virtue of the draft Law on the Penitentiary System, the possibilities of providing pastoral care to persons under investigation and convicted persons, as well as to the personnel of penitentiary institutions, should be expanded.

The new edition of the Law of Ukraine "On the Protection of Personal Data" should contain a ban on the processing of personal data on religious or ideological beliefs, membership in religious organizations, according to the UOC hierarch. However, the religious organization should be able to carry out such processing as required by applicable law.

Members of the AUCCRO stated that they are willing to participate in the public discussion of bills, related to the activities of religious organizations, and in various areas of cooperation between religious communities and the government and society.

Earlier, the Verkhovna Rada rejected bills on liability for criticizing LGBT people but legalized the gambling business.

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