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Showing posts from 2013

"Man to man is so unjust, woman to woman is even worse "- Caribbean IRN Update November 2013

In Grenada, a  march against men's immorality organised by the Grand Anse Seventh Day Adventist Church starts chanting "Man to man is so unjust, woman to woman is even worse " . However, activists were present and the discussion about the March was taken up in the media. (These news clips are from the CC6 Facebook Page  ) Post by CC6 . The second clip features Nigel Mathlin from GrenCHAP responding to the march Post by CC6 . The Caribbean Women and Sexual Diversity Conference was held in September 2013 in Curacao. Kenita Placide spoke in this interview on DBS News in St Lucia The blogs from participants Latoya Nugent and  Ulelli Verbeke ; and the articles in the Trinidad Guardian and St Lucia Voice tell some of the results of the conference. The first hearings for the challenge to the immigration laws brought by Maurice Tomlinson against Belize

Plight and Pride of the Caribbean homosexuals - Caribbean IRN Update October 2013

An editorial in the Kaieteur News of Guyana speaks to the Plight of the Homosexuals, while a BBC documentary (first aired 9 November, 2013) addresses Jamaica's Gay Divide. Earlier in October, the police conducted a raid in Jamaica on some of the homeless gay youth as reported in this news item . Their belongings were burnt and no alternative accommodation was found for the youth. SASOD launches a video with the Envisioning Project entitled Homophobia in Guyana at which tells the story of Jessica and Maeve . On Monday 28th October, 2013 SASOD and other Guyanese organisations made submissions to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR)  on "Violence, Sexuality and Gender Issues Affecting Children in Guyana" . The IACHR urged the government to take leadership in ensuring Human Rights. The hearing can be viewed at . The launch of the

Proper purpose to be transgender, independence acknowledgement and kisses : Caribbean IRN Update September 2013

The j udgement was handed down i n the cross-dressing challenge in Guyana, ruling that the law only applied when cross-dressing was for 'improper purpose' The judge also ruled that the Magistrate did not do anything wrong in recommending Jesus to the litigants.  The litigants plan to appeal. The commentary in Guyana included an editorial in the Kaieteur News on the separation of church and state  and an a nalysis from Dr Alissa Trotz  in which she notes about the litigants "Their advocacy asks us to consider whether the freedoms that some of us enjoy in the Caribbean are based on the unfreedom of others. Surely this is not the lesson to be learned from the struggles of our ancestors." Dr Rosamond King wrote Trans in Guyana: Recognised but not Protected ; Scott Long wrote   Decision on Guyana’s dress code: Teheran on the Caribbean  and Se-shauna Wheatle gave a summary in the article Criminalising Cross-Dressing in Guyana: Quincy McEwan et al vs. Attorney General

Dwayne Jones' life, Call to Action and gay taxpayers - Caribbean IRN Update August 2013

16 year old Jamaican Dwayne Jones spoke a bit about his life a fewmonths before he was murdered. This interview was replayed  in this CVM Live News broadcast Some other details of Dwayne' life are in this AP article  which gives insight into the stories of powerlessness felt by many LGBT youth. Queen Ifrica's call for no gays at the Jamaica Independence Celebrations drew outrage from LGBT Jamaicans at home and abroad. The Ministry of Youth and Culture issued a cautious statement , while in Toronto, Canada a publicly funded appearance was cancelled. The controversy is summed up in this article in the Jamaica Star   Gays Celebrate Independence , too   Equality Jamaic a continues to engage the diaspora in stories to support the calls to engage the Jamaican politicians in condemning the increasing homophobic violence as Maurice Tomlinson reports in  this blog The litigation in the Caribbean against homophobic laws continues, and this Newsday Trinidad article speaks a

Homophobic Murder and honeymoons in paradise- Caribbean IRN Update July 2013

The mob murder of 17 year old Dwayne Jacobs in Jamaica is a brutal reminder of the danger which many LGBT people face in their communities. July also saw in Haiti, the mobilising of 'anti-gay' marches which resulted in violence towards Haitian LGBT persons. The Government of Haiti issued a response to the violence (document shared by CARIFLAGS) and the Jamaican Minister of Justice Senator Mark Golding also condemned the murder of Dwayne Jacobs. No one has been arrested. The Southern Poverty Law Centre launched  a report Dangerous Liaisons: The American Religious Right & the Criminalization of Homosexuality in Belize    which questions the role of the United States  religious groups in fueling the anti-gay rights initiatives in Belize.  There have been marches and other kinds of public interactions over Belize's Gender Policy as reported in this News 5 collection. However, other alternative religious views are being articulated such as those of Reverend Dr C

Survey Report : Attitudes towards Homosexuals in Guyana (2013)

In early 2013 the regional research organisation Caribbean Development Research Services (CADRES) concluded a national survey across Guyana which examined the attitudes of Guyanese towards homosexuals. This was a component of a three-country examination of similar attitudes. These studies were funded by the United Kingdom Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the Barbados HIV/Aids Commission and sought to explore, benchmark and in the case of Barbado s track, local attitudes toward this section of the population which has recently been the focus of increased attention. CADRES also did a similar survey in Trindad & Tobago. CADRES has made the report available for public use. Click here to download the report. The report was launched in Guyana on 19th July, 2013. The launch event featured a presentation by Mr Peter Wickham, Director of CADRES This is a slide cast of the presentation. Attitudes towards homosexuals in Guyana from Caribbean International Resourc

Celebration, culture wars, violence - Caribbean IRN Update June 2013

There was celebration in Martinique as Rosemonde Zébo and Myriam Jourdan became the first same-sex couple to be married there. There was celebration in Guyana as SASOD commemorated its 10th Annversary  with a range of events including the launch of their documentary video. In Guyana as well, the arguments on the Constitutional challenge to the cross-dressing laws conclude . In the midst of the celebrations though, the violence against Sandy Jackman who was a target of an acid attack is reminder of the hatred which exists. The Guyana Rainbow Foundation also issued a statement to condemn the sections of reporting on the media which intimated. Caribbean media though, showed its diversity.  The US Supreme Court ruling on DOMA resulted in editorials in the Jamaica Gleaner and Stabroek News which spoke to the reforms necessary in Jamaica and Guyana respectively. The Atlantic Magazine carries an interesting article about the "culture wars" as they related

Caroline neither Male nor Female - Guiana Graphic April 1, 1966

(Reprinted in Guyana Chronicle, Sunday 26 May, 2013 "Tales From Way Back When" ) (Guiana Graphic: April 1, 1966 ) ‘CAROLINE’, a 65-year-old patient whose a sex abnormality created a stir among doctors and nurses in the New Amsterdam Hospital as she lay dying, was neither male nor female. A doctor who made his revelation yesterday disclosed that the patient was a victim of the abnormality from birth, and carried around a body that was partly male and partly female.' The doctor said that this condition could have been corrected if the patient had sought the necessary operation at the age of about 16, but according to the doctor, when the patient arrived at the hospital in a dying condition, the question of such an operation was ruled out. ‘Caroline-' Vaughn. of African descent, was born in New  Amsterdam, and her only known relative is an adopted son. Persons who regarded Caroline  as a woman said: "She wore necklaces and earrings and feminine undergarments&

Legal challenges, IDAHOT Celebrations : Caribbean IRN Update April, May 2013

The months of April and May 2013 saw LGBT issues being discussed in Caribbean courts and in the media. The International Day against Homophobia and Transphobia celebrations around 17 May, 2013 provided focus to the work being done in the Caribbean. Activist Deni James of the group, MSM No Political Agenda of Trinidad & Tobago died on 8 May, 2013. In Belize, the prohibition of homosexuals from entering the country became personal for Maurice Tomlinson who decided not to apply for a waiver to go visit his son , who was doing well in a Spelling Bee competition. Caribbean Commentary continued with articles such as Sexuality and the State by Dr Dylan Kerrigan,  Peeping Tom in Guyana asking "C oming Soon our Way  : Same Sex Marriage " and Stella Says in Stabroek News "W e all have the right to be who we really are " In Guyana, the Constitutional Challenge on the Cross Dressing laws came up in Court, while in Belize, the UNIBAM Constitutional Challenge was al

Growing up Gay and Guyanese

by Gregory Sanjay May 2013 ( Greg Sanjay is a gay Guyanese who lives in Sunnyside, Queens, New York City. He studied molecular biology and psychology and aspires to be a therapist and an author. His experiences of being gay in Guyana have shaped those aspirations as well as his desire to see a deeper sense of community and acceptance in Guyana. ) What it means to be Guyanese has been a recurrent thought over the past year. This year marks an important milestone - more than half my life has been lived in another country. Despite this, I am undeniably Guyanese. I speak with my native accent and retain a strong sense of attachment to the country and its customs. This suggests that a person’s identity is weighted heavily on childhood experiences. There are many developmental theories that corroborate my experience. They point out that childhood experiences set the foundation for emotional, cognitive and social development of the individual. I agree. Despite living