Do you think the Buggery Law should be?

The Safe House Homeless MSM Project 2009 a detailed look & more



In response to numerous requests for more information on the defunct Safe House Pilot Project that was to address the growing numbers of displaced and homeless men in Kingston in 2007/8/9, a review of the relevance of the project and the possible avoidance of present issues with some of its previous residents if it were kept open.
Recorded June 12, 2013; also see from the former Executive Director named in the podcast more background on the project: HERE

Thursday, December 10, 2009

JFLAG is 11 years Old - December 10, 2009

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It was 11 years ago that JFLAG was formed on the same day as Human Rights Day, J-FLAG's mission is or was to work towards a Jamaican society in which the Human Rights and Equality of Lesbians, All-Sexuals, and Gays are guaranteed.

To foster the acceptance and enrichment of the lives of same-gender-loving persons who have been, and continue to be, an integral part of society.

J-FLAG according to its website says it holds the vision to move forward in a spirit of oneness, love, dignity and respect towards the establishment of a Jamaica, and world, devoid of prejudice, injustice, discrimination and oppression. And, furthermore, to ensure the human rights of Lesbians, All-Sexuals and Gays, as set out in the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights .


Legal Reform and Advocacy
J-FLAG has been actively lobbying for legal reform. They summited a Parliamentary Submission to amend the non-discrimination clause within the Constitution to include sexual orientation was reviewed by the Joint Select Committee on the Charter of Rights Bill. In December, 2001, the Committee made its recommendations to Parliament. It declined to support our proposed amendment but did recommend that the House consider repealing the Buggery Law. It still tackles this area along with some crisis intervention for persons who have been abused and suffer from homophobic violence related issues.


They say they are strengthening efforts to ensure the successful passage of this bill through parliament, and will continue to push for the amendment to the constitution and continue to challenge all forms of discrimination and censorship by releasing regular press statements on current issues affecting the gay, lesbian and all-sexual community, and by publishing position papers on topics related to human rights, and by engaging entities such as the Ministry of National Security and Justice, Jamaicans for Justice, Amnesty International, etc.


Education Programmes
Their Education Programme which was designed to striving to disseminate information regarding J-FLAG's existence and purpose, and issues affecting sexual minorities and their impact on society at large has been defunct for some time. They also attempt to promote self-awareness and self-empowerment within our community and use a variety of formats to achieve these goals including;

Various publications such as informational brochures; SOH!, our quarterly newsletter; our website; editorial letters; and press releases
Email announcements and updates to local and international organisations
Interviews in newspaper, radio and television media
Discussions on our Hotline and chat room (now defunct)
Presentations to target groups
Face-to-face discussion forums on special topics
Display booths at public events
Research assistance through their library and media watch archive



There are more questions than answers these days in the community as to what is JFLAG doing now? as they seem to have gone too quiet in as far as the forumatic activities are concerned and engaging the GLBTQ community directly in trying to solve to the problems facing us. Many of the activities listed above have been discontinued for years and one waits to see if any improvements will materialise. The website has been criticised severely by Jamaican and international visitors alike. Persons and groups are willing to join and help but more has to be done urgently by the flaggers before persons feel so moved to assist.


All in all the movement is welcomed and we must in our own way do our parts to arrive at tolerance and understanding.


H

Uganda 'to remove death penalty from anti-gay bill'

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Uganda will reportedly drop plans for the execution and life imprisonment of gays.

An 'anti-homosexuality' bill has been passing through the country's parliament but according to news agency Bloomberg, some of the most drastic measures will be removed.

The bill provoked worldwide outrage when it was first tabled. America, the UK and France all expressed concern, as did countless human rights and gay organisations.

Gay rights groups have urged Commonwealth leaders to throw Uganda out of the Commonwealth unless it drops the proposed law.

The minister for ethics and integrity, James Nsaba Buturo, reportedly said a more "refined" set of punishments would be favoured instead of execution.

Although it is not clear what this means, he pointed to so-called 'gay cure' therapies, saying the bill would promote counselling for gay people.

Buturo said the modified draft bill would come before parliament within two weeks.

If the provisions for execution and life imprisonment are dropped, the bill still places severe penalties on gay people, their families and those who work for gay organisations.

Other offences include promoting homosexuality, aiding and abetting homosexuality and keeping a house "for purposes of homosexuality".

Some have suggested the bill is so badly written, it could threaten two men who hug with jail terms.

The MP who tabled the bill, David Bahati, has argued his bill will protect children, youths and the "traditional family".

The reported concessions come days after a Swedish minister suggested that aid funds to Uganda could be cut if it persevered with the proposed laws.

Buturo retorted: "It is revealing that support to Uganda literally translated means that it is on condition that Uganda should do the bidding of givers of such support regardless of what Ugandans themselves think."

Monday, December 7, 2009

Dancehall impacts the rise of transgender community

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270,000 gay, bisexual, and transgendered people live in Jamaica

Steven Jackson - Jamaica Observer
Sunday, December 06, 2009

The homophobic dancehall culture can stop the rise of local transgendered community, argued the Jamaica Forum for Lesbians All-Sexuals and Gays (JFlag) following the recent party photos of cross-dressers.

JFlag said that the dancehall culture castigates such individuals but fails to crush them.

"The genre of music called dancehall ... has certainly played its part in preventing the kind of dialogue that would allow for a greater understanding of this particular minority grouping," asserted Jason McFarlane, programmes manager at JFlag in response to Observer queries. "(But) homophobia does not prevent the emergence of transgendered persons it only prevents dialogue around transgender issues as many have not yet dealt with the reality of homosexuality."

BARBIE… first made headlines in late October when ‘she’ was held and subsequently released by the police

JFlag added that transgendered persons are stepping out, but fear prevents them from fully expressing their gender identity.

The gay lobby estimates that up to 270,000 lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered people live in Jamaica. That represents "between three to 10 per cent of the population". Of that figure a "smaller percentage" are transgendered persons which includes transvestites (cross-dressers) and transsexuals (surgical augmentation).

"The reality is that this already exists but many don't have the space or the vocabulary with which to express and articulate this," he said.

Not all transgendered persons are private, as the nation's latest celebrity, Barbie (crossdresser) posed in a series of party pictorials published this week. The fashionable Barbie however was not alone and posed with two crossdressing friends. All three were dressed for the spotlight with big hair and tiny skirts and tops. The photos made headlines because Jamaica is arguably the most homophobic country in the western hemisphere. Proponents of this view cite gay murders and attacks but opponents counter stating that most of these murders are committed by gays in crimes of passion.

JFlag added that transgendered persons have the right to freely exist in Jamaican society.

"What would be beneficial is the acceptance of diversity of whatever prevents itself in a way that as a society we can have a rationale discussion and come to some understanding of its place in a Jamaican society," he said. "It would in turn be beneficial to those who express as this third gender as there is whole sector of people who never get to understand and experience who they are because of social constraints."

JFlag added that transgenderism is to gender what homosexuality is to sexuality. In other words a transgendered person does not have to be gay. "Sexuality and gender are separate markers and the distinction needs to be made because people continue to believe that someone who is transgendered is gay and this is not true. The concern of the transgender community is one of a disconnect between how they feel and how they see their body expressing how they feel. Simply put, what is between the ears doesn't match what is between the legs, so someone feels that they are female but carries male genitalia and vice versa."

Barbie first made headlines in late October when 'she' was held and subsequently released by the police. The police say they noticed a man and a 'woman' arguing in a Toyota Mark II motorcar parked at a lonely spot along Manchester Avenue in May Pen. The police took both persons to the May Pen Police Station where it was discovered that the 'woman' was a man. Police suspected that the cross-dresser propositioned the male for sex. Barbie had subsequently refuted the claim of prostitution. The man reportedly fumed when he discovered that he was intimate with a man. The police inspected the crossdresser's driver's licence and voter's ID which showed a Gregory Park, St Catherine address. As news spread, a crowd converged on the police station to see Barbie who was clad in a tight-fitting blouse, jeans shorts, high heeled shoes, loop earrings and a wig. The cross-dresser sported false eyelashes and neatly shaven eyebrows. The police say they admonished and discharged both men. Barbie subsequently has claimed that policemen with romantic interests have been calling 'her' phone.

Lesbians Rushed ……….. Left with a warning

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On the evening of Friday December 4, 2009 was the scene in the busy commercial district of Half Way Tree in front a popular furniture store where two females were accused of being lesbians and too friendly in public were verbally chastised by vendors who at that time regularly and illegally spread their wares on the sidewalks after store closing hours to catch the evening sales.

The spot is known for couples or passers-by who would sit under a famous national tree to converse eat or listen to the sound system blaring by the nearby Informal Commercial Importers arcade. The ladies were clearly being watched from their approach to the spot by the vendors based on the utterances I heard upon reaching the shouting match between one of the ladies and several irate male vendors. They were upset that this “Butch” or (Jamaican colourful expletive) “Man royal” woman was taking away a beautiful female from the male population. Several other passers-by were curious but a few continued their way lamenting that all Jamaica was becoming gay while some argued that if the women weren’t doing anything illegal then there shouldn’t be an issue.

My intervention however came when I said that they the vendors shouldn’t be judging or accusing anyone as they were vending their wares illegally on the street and would loose if they went to court or any other matter arose out of the exchange. I was quickly rebuffed with strong Jamaican expletives by the group of accusers and one man in particular suggested I was defending the ladies too much with their nasty lifestyle. I kept my stance however and reminded them that there was nothing in law that stopped anyone of the same sex from socializing publicly.

"Unu lef de oman dem alone, a tru unu can get dem fi fuck das why unu vex,” a fat woman exclaimed as she walked away, she too was a vendor, the small crowd burst out laughing in one of the more lighter moments of the exchange. “Some a unu man can do nuttin wid unu bleach out face an a battyman unda de quiet,” she continued, at this point the conversation regained it seriousness and the man who took me on before continued his line of argument saying the women shouldn’t be there doing that with support from others.

“fiya fi unu, bout unu a bring dem ting deh ya yasso” he pronounced with others supporting him. Other vendors said they didn’t actually see the women in a compromising position neither did the other heterosexual couple whom I proceeded to question, they said they saw nothing “funny” the male of the two said. They were clearly surprised at the happenings.

The irate male vendor continued accused them of hugging, kissing and being romantic and by this time two other bleached faced male vendors seem to support his line even though as it turned out they never witnessed the actual embrace. I maintained my stance on the issue and the exchange continued for a while before cooling down. The ladies were visibly shaken as they never experienced this kind of backlash before, this I learned after talking with them as we walked to the main square, I warned them however that they should be careful when in public as people will say all kinds of things to embellish their beliefs or assumptions of what they think is about to or has happened.

Thankfully the situation did not escalate into a violent attack, I assume because there is a certain tolerance for lesbianism and the criticism by the fat woman during the light moment. This has brought light to a stereotype of a specific section of bisexual or gays as bleached faced men who also act masculine and have “Suga Mommas” in the vending community who take care of their needs financially while the men “perform” sexually for the favours granted. It was clear to me at that juncture when the remark was made that the tone and fervency of the opposition heightened at first in typical fashion but was reduced rather quickly which begged the question did she know something or was he and his other cronies guilty?
The accused women were thankful for the support from myself and the other passers-by and commented that people in general are thinking and slowly adjusting to tolerance when it comes to lesbianism and homosexuality in general. One of the ladies made the same observation on the fat woman’s comments and also expressed her support in the belief. She continued that she believed that some of the men who are like “that” just can’t stand to see other gay people together as it bothers them.

Closeted/clandestine gays vs out/identifiable homosexuals? hhhmmmmm.

My caution to us is the same just be vigilant and careful when traversing the streets.

I was upset though that my two companions who were walking with me before disappeared when we came up on the scene, while I know that some may fear happenings like these I also feel we must learn to engage issues of this nature towards an amicable and peaceful solution, we can’t keep running all the time.

H

Human Rights Lawyer Hilaire Sobers takes on the Observer on recent Gay incident article

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Sunday, December 06, 2009

Your recent articles on so-called homosexual violence are stunning for their flagrant infidelity to intellectual rigour, and, indeed, to even the most rudimentary precepts of journalism. In the first article entitled Gay man gouges out lover's eyes, your reporter relies entirely on what the police told him to ground his conclusion that the alleged assailant and his victim were both homosexual, and that the attack was based on "jealous fit of rage". Nowhere in the story is there any report of direct testimony from either of the parties, or an eyewitness.

Like many journalists, he appears to accept the police account of what occurred, without question. In the absence of any corroborating testimony from either of the parties or an eyewitness, an objective observer (pardon the pun) might be inclined to consider the writer's conclusions about sexual orientation or the motive for the alleged attack as premature and lacking in forensic rigour...

The writer goes on to report that the alleged victim was "treated at the same hospital for a gunshot wound to his buttocks close to two months ago and created a stir when medical personnel attending to him had to remove a 'G string' underwear off him while treating the wound". He further titillates his readers, stating that: "He nearly brought the house down when the doctors and nurses treating him had to remove a pink 'G string' off him." This is tabloid journalism at its very worst. Even if this story is true, of what relevance is it to the story of the alleged victim having his eyes gouged out?


SOBERS... is wearing G-string underwear really news?


And really, is wearing G-string underwear really news? Would you report on the style of underwear of a female who has been attacked by her male spouse or boyfriend? The gratuitous juxtaposition of the gunshot wound with the eye-gouging, together with the salacious disclosure of his choice of underwear, reveals nothing more than undisguised editorial contempt for the victim, coupled with a malicious intent to publicly humiliate him...

And really, is wearing G-string underwear really news? Would you report on the style of underwear of a female who has been attacked by her male spouse or boyfriend? The gratuitous juxtaposition of the gunshot wound with the eye-gouging, together with the salacious disclosure of his choice of underwear, reveals nothing more than undisguised editorial contempt for the victim, coupled with a malicious intent to publicly humiliate him...

The Rev Aaron Dumas has fairly well-known anti-gay theology, in keeping with his faith. How then, does your writer come to rely on him as an expert on gay psychology and violence? He does not enlighten us on Mr Dumas' credentials, other than to offer the bald assertion that Mr Dumas has counseled 'troubled gays'? There is no indication that the writer made any effort to elicit the views of the gay community on anything relating to gay violence or indeed on the credentials of so-called experts like Mr Dumas.

For that matter, I'm not aware that the reporter made any effort to elicit the views of the broader human rights community. Instead, he is content to draw facile conclusions, such as: "Homosexual spin doctors in lobby groups such as Kingston-based Jamaica Forum for Lesbians All Sexuals & Gays (J-FLAG) and London-based Outrage! often attempt to deflect blame onto 'homophobic' Jamaicans, a ploy, critics suggest, to pressure the Government into relaxing anti-gay laws" and "Homosexual groups claim that there have been over 50 acts of fatal violence against their members in the last five years, although they failed to say how many of those were committed in their own camp".

The intellectual dishonesty is breath-taking. When exactly did any of these groups claim that there had been over 50 murders against their members, and when exactly, did he interview any member of these groups? And if any of them 'failed' to say how many murders were committed by other homosexuals, did your writer inquire as to why they were unable to say?

...So at the end of the day, the writer starts and ends with the unsubstantiated premise that homosexuals are more prone to vicious acts of violence than non-homosexuals. Apart from speculation and innuendo, he relies on two clerics and a psychiatrist to support what amounts to no more than a deeply entrenched prejudice against, or aversion for, the gay community. There is not even the slightest attempt to incorporate the views of the gay community or human rights community. For me, that is not journalism; that's propaganda.
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Urgent Need to discuss sex & sexuality II

Following a cowardly decision by the Minister(try) of Education to withdraw an all important Health Family Life, HFLE Manual on sex and sexuality I examine the possible reasons why we have the homo-negative challenges on the backdrop of a missing multi-generational understanding of sexuality and the focus on sexual reproductive activity in the curriculum.

Newstalk 93FM's Issues On Fire: Polygamy Should Be Legalized In Jamaica 08.04.14



debate by hosts and UWI students on the weekly program Issues on Fire on legalizing polygamy with Jamaica's multiple partner cultural norms this debate is timely.

Also with recent public discourse on polyamorous relationships, threesomes (FAME FM Uncensored) and on social.

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Are you ready to fight for gay rights and freedoms?? (multiple answers are allowed)

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What do you think is the most important area of HIV treatment research today?

Do you think Lesbians could use their tolerance advantage to help push for gay rights in Jamaica??

Violence and venom force gay Jamaicans to hide

Violence and venom force gay Jamaicans to hide a 2009 Word focus report where the history of the major explosion of homeless MSM occurred and references to the party DVD that was leaked to the bootleg market which exposed many unsuspecting patrons to the public (3:59), also the caustic remarks made by former member of Parliament in the then JLP administration. The agencies at the time were also highlighted and the homo negative and homophobic violence met by ordinary Jamaican same gender loving men. The late founder of the CVC, former ED of JASL and JFLAG Dr. Robert Carr was also interviewed. At 4:42 that MSM was still homeless to 2012 but has managed to eek out a living but being ever so cautious as his face is recognizable from the exposed party DVD, he has been slowly making his way to recovery despite the very slow pace

Thanks for your Donations

Hello readers,

thank you for your donations via Paypal in helping to keep this blog going, my limited frontline community work, temporary shelter assistance at my home and related costs. Please continue to support me and my allies in this venture that has now become a full time activity. When I first started blogging in late 2007 it was just as a pass time to highlight GLBTQ issues in Jamaica under then JFLAG's blogspot page but now clearly there is a need for more forumatic activity which I want to continue to play my part while raising more real life issues pertinent to us.

Donations presently are accepted via Paypal where buttons are placed at points on this blog(immediately below, GLBTQJA (Blogspot), GLBTQJA (Wordpress) and the Gay Jamaica Watch's blog as well. If you wish to send donations otherwise please contact: glbtqjamaica@live.com




Activities & Plans: ongoing and future

  • To continue this venture towards website development with an E-zine focus

  • Work with other Non Governmental organizations old and new towards similar focus and objectives

  • To find common ground on issues affecting GLBTQ and straight friendly persons in Jamaica towards tolerance and harmony

  • Exposing homophobic activities and suggesting corrective solutions

  • To formalise GLBTQ Jamaica's activities in the long term

  • Continuing discussion on issues affecting GLBTQ people in Jamaica and elsewhere

  • Welcoming, examining and implemeting suggestions and ideas from you the viewing public

  • Present issues on HIV/AIDS related matters in a timely and accurate manner

  • Assist where possible victims of homophobic violence and abuse financially, temporary shelter(my home) and otherwise

  • Track human rights issues in general with a view to support for ALL

Thanks again
Mr. H

Tel: 1-876-8134942
lgbtevent@gmail.com








Peace

Information & Disclaimer

lgbtevent@gmail.com

Individuals who are mentioned or whose photographs appear on this site are not necessarily Homosexual, HIV positive or have AIDS.

This blog contains pictures that may be disturbing. We have taken the liberty to present these images as evidence of the numerous accounts of homophobic violence meted out to alledged gays in Jamaica.

Faces and names witheld for the victims' protection.

This blog not only watches and covers LGBTQ issues in Jamaica and elsewhere but also general human rights and current affairs where applicable.

This blog contains HIV prevention messages that may not be appropriate for all audiences.

If you are not seeking such information or may be offended by such materials, please view labels, post list or exit.

Since HIV infection is spread primarily through sexual practices or by sharing needles, prevention messages and programs may address these topics.

This blog is not designed to provide medical care, if you are ill, please seek medical advice from a licensed practioner

Thanks so much for your kind donations and thoughts.

As for some posts, they contain enclosure links to articles, blogs and or sites for your perusal, use the snapshot feature to preview by pointing the cursor at the item(s) of interest. Such item(s) have a small white dialogue box icon appearing to their top right hand side.


Recent Homophobic Incidents
CLICK HERE for related posts/labels and HERE from the gayjamaicawatch's BLOG containing information I am aware of. If you know of any such reports or incidents please contact lgbtevent@gmail.com

Peace to you and be safe out there.

Love.

What to do if you are attacked (News You Can Use)

First, be calm: Do not panic; it may be very difficult to maintain composure if attacked but this is important.

Try to reason with the attacker: Establish communication with the person. This takes a lot of courage. However, a conversation may change the intention of an attacker.

Do not try anything foolish: If you know outmanoeuvring the attacker is impossible, do not try it.

Do not appear to be afraid: Look the attacker in the eye and demonstrate that you are not fearful.

This may have a psychological effect on the individual.

Emergency numbers
The police 119

Kingfish 811

Crime Stop 311


Steps to Take When Contronted or Arrested by Police

a) Ask to see a lawyer or Duty Council

b) Only give name and address and no other information until a lawyer is present to assist

c) Try to be polite even if the scenario is tensed) Don’t do anything to aggravate the situation

e) Every complaint lodged at a police station should be filed and a receipt produced, this is not a legal requirement but an administrative one for the police to track reports

f) Never sign to a statement other than the one produced by you in the presence of the officer(s)

g) Try to capture a recording of the exchange or incident or call someone so they can hear what occurs, place on speed dial important numbers or text someone as soon as possible

h) File a civil suit if you feel your rights have been violatedi) When making a statement to the police have all or most of the facts and details together for e.g. "a car" vs. "the car" represents two different descriptions

j) Avoid having the police writing the statement on your behalf except incases of injuries, make sure what you want to say is recorded carefully, ask for a copy if it means that you have to return for it

Sexual Health / STDs News From Medical News Today

This Day in History