|Frederick Allen // Ben Trivett|
Chechnyan officials have continued to imprison gay men, torturing them in facilities that are being compared to concentration camps—even pressuring locals to murder their gay relatives.
“We take for granted how lucky we are in this country,” [Frederick] Allen, 34, says of being a gay American. “When the news broke, I couldn’t stop thinking about it.”
So he decided to do something. In April, Allen launched a fund-raising campaign on Facebook, and within a month he’d raised more than $250,000.
“I couldn’t believe it,” admits Allen, who donated the proceeds to Rainbow Railroad, a Canadian nonprofit that helps LGBTQ people around the world find safe haven from state-enabled violence.
Thanks in large part to Allen’s contributions, Rainbow Railroad has helped more than 30 gay and bisexual men secretly escape from Chechnya to Canada.
For more information about Rainbow Railroad, visit www.rainbowrailroad.com.