Friday afternoon saw two protests outside of Metro Hall, with Mayor Craig Greenberg hosting a rally marking the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and a small gathering nearby protesting a slew of Kentucky House and Senate bills targeting LGBTQ youth.
“To all of the refugees from war and violent conflict in Ukraine and too many other countries: the people of Louisville stand with you,” said Greenberg at the rally showing solidarity with Ukraine.
Members of the Ukrainian community and their supporters held blue and yellow signs — the colors of the Ukrainian flag — that bore slogans like “Save Ukraine Today = Save the World Tomorrow” and “Putin is a Bad Guy.”
Greenberg, who was joined by Rep. Morgan McGarvey at the rally, said Louisville has taken in approximately 100 Ukrainian refugees since the war began last year.
Nearby, students and supporters rallied against a number of bills that target LGBTQ youth in Kentucky. Those bills include Senate Bill 150, House Bill 173 and House Bill 177.
Among other things, those bills include provisions that would allow public school teachers to not use a student's preferred pronouns, mandate students use bathrooms that correspond with the gender on their birth certificate, and require educators inform parents if a child requests different pronouns be used or otherwise changes their gender expression.
“These would effectively curb the rights of queer youth to safely express themselves in school, limit the ability of teachers to discuss matters of gender and sexual orientation, and force schools to out students to their parents,” said protest organizer Piper Hudson-Meredith in a press release.
Check out LEO's photos from the rallies in our gallery above.| Photos by Tyler Lizenby