Caribbean

 

 

 

The UN’s LGBT expert has advocated for a global partnership to end violence

He advocated for unity in his keynote speech at the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association (ILGA) in Bangkok. Vitit Muntarbhorn said: “resolute action is required to stop the violence and discrimination affecting not only LGBT communities but also the human rights defenders working with them… “this goes hand in hand with the… Read more »

Why Has Cuba’s HIV-Infected Population Doubled This Decade?

By many measures, Cuba is doing a bang-up job of fighting HIV. The country has long boasted the lowest HIV prevalence of any Caribbean nation, and was recently celebrated internationally for becoming the first country in the world to eliminate mother-to-child HIV transmission. Over the last five years, however, Cuba has seen a startling rise… Read more »

This is how Fidel Castro persecuted gay people

Cuban revolutionary Fidel Castro has died aged 90 – prompting strong debate about his time in power that included the rounding up, persecution and murder of LGBT people. Homosexuals were viewed as inherently counter-revolutionary and homosexuality was declared a “deviation incompatible with the revolution” by Castro’s regime. LGBT people, particularly gay men, were routinely sent… Read more »

Cuban youths, LGBT community enjoy nightlife, dream of better future

Some youths pick remaining on island over U.S. migration Sanata Clara, Cuba – The night starts with a stop by the Camilo Theater, inside the tallest building in Santa Clara, Cuba, in what’s known as the Santa Clara Libre Hotel. Inside one of the rooms that used to be a movie theater, a popular cover… Read more »

Problem with men who have sex with men?

…Ask yourself: What would Christ do? The important matters of individual and public health are seldom discussed from the perspective of culture, society’s history, or religious norms. Yet, the social determinants of health include all these factors, in addition to matters such as disease vectors and the social issues surrounding communicable and non-communicable diseases. When… Read more »

Cuba’s gay community comes out of the closet

Santa Clara, Cuba — As summer kicks off on this communist island, tall transvestites in short sparkling dresses and high heels line up at El Mejunje nightclub, a ruined hotel that turns into a sanctuary on Saturdays for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders. Some patrons start shaking their hips to the beat of American hip-hop,… Read more »

LGBTI rights: Important legal precedent in the Caribbean

In a landmark decision delivered on Friday, June 10, the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) ruled that as a homosexual I must be allowed into Belize and Trinidad notwithstanding their laws that ban the entry of gays. The court also urged both countries to repeal these archaic bits of legislation, which create confusion for travel… Read more »

Transformational Journeys 2016

El Puente—A Bridge to CUBA The St. Paul’s Foundation calls this adventure—El Puente—a bridge, hoping it to be the first of many crossings for our organization between Cubans and Americans as it becomes easier to engage deeply with one another. Cuba and the US are so geographically close, but the journey across, as you will discover, still has… Read more »

Barbados official says gays should be ‘left alone’ despite sodomy law

The Attorney General of Barbados has said that the country should protect gay people – even though gay sex is still technically illegal. Barbados law specifies that the punishment for male ‘buggery’ is life imprisonment, though the law is not regularly enforced. The ban initially dates back to the British colonial era, though it was… Read more »

Lead By Mariela Castro, Cuban Gay Activists Plan Mass Symbolic Wedding To Promote LGBT Rights

Havana, May 5 (Reuters) – Cuban gay rights activists led by the daughter of President Raul Castro plan a mass symbolic wedding on Saturday to promote acceptance of gay and transgender Cubans in a country once notoriously hostile toward them. The ceremony will be part of an annual gay pride parade and will be symbolic… Read more »

Stop Calling Jamaica “the Most Homophobic Place on Earth”

In April 2006, Time magazine branded Jamaica with an epithet it has yet to shake: “The Most Homophobic Place on Earth.” The article mentioned the murders of two of the island’s leading gay activists and detailed acts of mob violence, including the brutal bludgeoning of a gay man at the hands of assailants who included… Read more »

The number of Jamaicans who ‘hate’ gays has risen over 20% in four years

The number of people in Jamaica who “hate or reject” homosexual relationships has risen over 20% since 2011, a new survey has revealed. The 2015 Awareness, Attitude and Perception Survey asked employers, politicians and members of the public a number of questions in regards to same-sex relationships between June and July last year. Commissioned for… Read more »

Gay Pride and Prejudice in Dominican Republic

Shortly after taking up his post as American ambassador to the Dominican Republic in November 2013, Wally Brewster got a bit of unsolicited advice from the Vatican’s envoy to the Caribbean nation. “If you keep your private life behind the walls of your embassy, you’ll be O.K. here,” Nuncio Jude Thaddeus Okolo told Mr. Brewster.… Read more »

Dominicans see LGBT rights advancing thanks to gay US diplomat

Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic (AP) — Deivis Ventura is still just a candidate for the Dominican Republic’s Chamber of Deputies, but he feels like he’s already scored a victory. The 42-year-old former private school teacher, the first openly gay person to run for his country’s Congress, is delighted his campaign has not encountered overt hostility… Read more »

Dominicans See LGBT Rights Advancing With Gay US Diplomat

Deivis Ventura is still just a candidate for the Dominican Republic’s Chamber of Deputies, but he feels like he’s already scored a victory. The 42-year-old former private school teacher, the first openly gay person to run for his country’s Congress, is delighted his campaign has not encountered overt hostility as it likely would have in… Read more »

Groups attack US ambassador for taking husband to school

Conservative groups in the Dominican Republic have called for the US ambassador to resign after taking his husband to a  local school. The Catholic Bishops Conference of the Dominican Republic attacked Wally Brewster in a statement issued this week. “Mr. Brewster approaches our children in public and private schools, in sports tournaments, and other youth… Read more »

Lesbian hip-hop duo from Havana fights homophobia with music

London (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – According to Odaymara Cuesta from the lesbian Cuban hip-hop band Krudas Cubensi, there’s a gay person in every family in Cuba. But a lot needs to change in Cuba before its lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) citizens are able to expose their true identity without fear of discrimination in… Read more »

Puerto Rico Governor promises equal marriage is here to stay despite court ruling to re-ban it

The Governor of Puerto Rico has spoken out in favour of equal marriage – after a judge attempted to re-ban same-sex weddings by throwing out parts of the US Constitution. Puerto Rico is an unincorporated territory of the United States and is not fully recognised as a US state. After the US Supreme Court ruled… Read more »

Cuba for sale: ‘Havana is now the big cake – and everyone is trying to get a slice’

Property developers are queuing up to pounce as Cuba opens its doors to the world. Proposals for Havana’s old harbour are described as ‘Las Vegas meets Miami in the Caribbean’. So can the city cope with the commercial storm ahead? In central Havana’s Parque Fe del Valle, at the end of a street bustling with… Read more »

Is Cuba Taking the Lead on LGBT Equality in Latin America?

Last May I had the pleasure of hearing Mariela Castro, daughter of current Cuban president Raúl Castro and niece of the infamous dictator Fidel Castro, speak while she was visiting on her extremely controversial trip to the United States. The following night I was fortunate enough to be granted direct access to her at a… Read more »

Activist Roundtable by Question

The Bahamas – Erin Greene I joined CAFRA (Caribbean Association for Feminist Research in Action) in The Bahamas in 2000 and became the Bahamas’ National Representative for CAFRA in 2002. I am now the interim deputy chairperson of CAFRA. I was a member of CRAFFT (Constitutional Rights Reform and Facilitation Team) that conducted a six-month… Read more »

Jamaican gay rights activist challenges law against sex between men

Gay rights campaigner and attorney Maurice Tomlinson brings rare legal challenge to the Caribbean island’s anti-sodomy laws A Jamaican gay rights activist has brought a rare legal challenge to the Caribbean island’s anti-sodomy laws that criminalize consensual sex between men, according to the Canadian advocacy group he works for. Gay rights campaigner and attorney Maurice… Read more »

Bermuda court grants equal rights to ‘binational’ same-sex couples

A judge has made a landmark ruling for same-sex couples in Bermuda. The Supreme Court in Bermuda has ruled that those in same-sex relationships with Bermudians should be granted the same rights to live and seek employment as their heterosexual counterparts, according to The Royal Gazette. The ruling comes after legal action was brought against… Read more »

‘My selfish reasons for fighting Jamaican homophobia’

LGBTI rights activist Maurice Tomlinson is back in Jamaica this week, preparing for a hearing at the Caribbean Court of Justice in connection with his case challenging the ban against gays entering Belize and Trinidad & Tobago. That case is just one instance of his work combating anti-gay laws and homophobia in the Caribbean, particularly… Read more »

On Being Queer in the Caribbean

Tallahassee, Fla. — “Listen. Dead people never stop talking.” So begins Marlon James’s novel “A Brief History of Seven Killings,” which last month won the Man Booker Prize. The statement has a particular resonance both in the book and outside it. In March, Mr. James, who was raised in Jamaica but now lives in the… Read more »

On Being Queer in the Caribbean

Tallahassee, Fla. — “Listen. Dead people never stop talking.” So begins Marlon James’s novel “A Brief History of Seven Killings,” which last month won the Man Booker Prize. The statement has a particular resonance both in the book and outside it. In March, Mr. James, who was raised in Jamaica but now lives in the… Read more »

On Being Queer in the Caribbean

Tallahassee, Fla. — “Listen. Dead people never stop talking.” So begins Marlon James’s novel “A Brief History of Seven Killings,” which last month won the Man Booker Prize. The statement has a particular resonance both in the book and outside it. In March, Mr. James, who was raised in Jamaica but now lives in the… Read more »

Changing attitudes in Cuba on gays and lesbians

As US-Cuba relations thaw, LGBT community hopes diplomatic changes lead to greater acceptance. Ash-Har Quraishi reports Source – America Aljazeera

Comment: Jamaica’s first LGBT Pride shows how far the country has come

Writing for PinkNews, David Lowis shares his experiences of last week’s Jamaican Gay Pride celebrations and how the tide is changing for the country’s LGBT community. Emancipation Park in Kingston, Jamaica, August 1. A crowd of around 40 LGBT people, activists and allies has gathered, still on a high from the Pride pre-launch party the… Read more »

Jamaica to hold its first gay pride celebration in the island’s capital

Weeklong event that was previously almost unthinkable in a Caribbean country long described as the one of the globe’s most hostile places to homosexuality Jamaica’s LGBT community is holding its first gay pride celebration in the island’s capital, a weeklong event that was previously almost unthinkable in a Caribbean country long described as the one… Read more »

Mayor of Jamaican capital to speak at Pride event

The mayor of the Jamaican capital on Friday said she has “a responsibility” to represent all of her city’s residents, including those who are LGBT. “I come from the point of view that I, as mayor, have a responsibility to all the individuals of Kingston,” Angela Brown-Burke told the Washington Blade during a telephone interview.… Read more »

Virgin Islands governor signs marriage executive order

The governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands on Thursday signed an executive order that requires officials in the territory to allow same-sex couples to marry. Gov. Kenneth Mapp signed the mandate less than two weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled gays and lesbians have the constitutional right to marry throughout the country. The St.… Read more »

Gay Men’s Chorus prepares to perform in Cuba after thaw in travel restrictions

Singers will team up with Cuban gay group Mano a Mano for nine concerts This Saturday, 20 members of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington will head to Cuba to perform – following the historic easing of travel restrictions between the two countries after half a century. The Chorus will join forces with the island’s… Read more »

Puerto Rico adopts same-sex marriage too!

The overseas United States territory of Puerto Rico will join the US in allowing same-sex marriage. After the Supreme Court decision that brought same-sex marriage to all 50 states, Puerto Rico Governor Alejandro Garcia Padilla has said the territory will follow suit. He acknowledged that was opposition to the move in the largely Catholic island,… Read more »

Progress in Jamaica toward ‘world as it should be’

Jamaican lesbian activist Angeline Jackson, executive director of Quality Citizenship Jamaica (QCJ), sees signs of progress in the fight against homophobia in Jamaica, as she explained in a commentary for Time magazine. See below for excerpts from the commentary, titled “Is ‘The Most Homophobic Place on Earth’ Turning Around?” Attitudes toward civil rights in Jamaica… Read more »

LGBT advocate challenges Cuban human rights record

Sagua La Grande, Cuba — A gay blogger who is a member of an independent Cuban LGBT advocacy group told the Washington Blade last week that human rights factor prominently into his work. “Definitely for a situation like ours (in Cuba,) human rights are something that are suppressed,” Maykel González Vivero told the Blade on… Read more »

Raul Castro’s Daughter Mariela Sponsors Blessing Of Cuban Gay Couples

Havana (AP) — The daughter of Cuban President Raul Castro sponsored a blessing ceremony Saturday for gay couples on an island where gay marriage remains illegal. Nearly two dozen gay couples held hands or embraced, some crying, as Protestant clergymen from the U.S. and Canada blessed them as part of official ceremonies leading up to… Read more »

Cuba to hold mass wedding to push for legal recognition of same-sex marriage

LGBT rights activists in Cuba are planning a mass wedding this weekend, with a view to pushing for legal recognition of same-sex marriage. Leading the activists will be Mariela Castro, the daughter of President Raul Castro, who happens to be a leading LGBT rights campaigner. Although only symbolic, and not legally recognised, the mass wedding… Read more »

Lead By Mariela Castro, Cuban Gay Activists Plan Mass Symbolic Wedding To Promote LGBT Rights

Havana (Reuters) – Cuban gay rights activists led by the daughter of President Raul Castro plan a mass symbolic wedding on Saturday to promote acceptance of gay and transgender Cubans in a country once notoriously hostile toward them. The ceremony will be part of an annual gay pride parade and will be symbolic because same-sex… Read more »

Evicted gay youths under attack (again) in Jamaica

On Wednesday, April 15 at about 1 p.m., some patrons of the Clocktower Plaza in Kingston decided to “cleanse” the premises of gays. This shopping venue was one of the few spaces in the capital that gays could hang out in relative peace, although they had to travel in groups. On this occasion, their congregation… Read more »