Security Message for U.S. Citizens: The Ugandan Anti-Homosexuality Act

On February 24, 2014, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni signed and enacted the Anti-Homosexuality Bill. The Anti-Homosexuality Act permits the imprisonment, for up to seven years, of anyone who “attempts to promote or in any way abets homosexuality and related practices.” Since some of the language in the law is vague and appears open to interpretation, the Embassy cannot predict with any confidence how it will be implemented.

The law could affect the exercise of the freedoms of expression and peaceful assembly of those who may wish to express support for the human rights of LGBT persons. The U.S. government understands this law applies to both Ugandan citizens and foreigners in Uganda. With rising numbers of arrests of alleged LGBT individuals on sodomy and other charges, LGBT individuals – or suspected LGBT individuals – could face harassment, imprisonment, or blackmail and violence from independent actors who view the law as giving license to attack and victimize individuals they suspect of homosexuality. The Embassy advises all U.S. citizens who are resident or visiting Uganda to carefully consider their plans in light of this new law. LGBT travelers should review the LGBT Travel Information page.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Uganda enroll in the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at www.Travel.State.Gov. STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency. If you don’t have internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

You can stay in touch and get updates by checking the U.S. Embassy Kampala website. You can also get global updates at the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs website, where you can find the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Alerts and Warnings and Country Specific Information. Follow us on Twitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on Facebook as well, or you can download our free Smart Traveler App, available through iTunes and the Google Play store, to have travel information at your fingertips. Current information on safety and security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States or a regular toll line at-1-202-501-4444 for callers from other countries. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).

The U.S. Embassy is located at Plot 1577 Ggaba Road. Contact information for the U.S. Embassy in Kampala is: phone number +256 (0) (414) 306 001 or +256 (0) (414) 259 791, fax +256 (0) (414) 258 451, and