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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

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Homo-negativity in public: So called Unruly gays chased from party

The Star News had as its headline in their hard copy edition of the paper Unruly gays chased from party where very little information was given by the tabloid, here is the story first:


Homosexuals created a scene at a popular event in the Corporate Area last weekend when they gyrated on each other forcing security personnel to intervene.


The group which consisted of at least eight males accompanied by one female had the attention of a large throng of patrons for about 15 minutes as they formed a circle in which they did their 'brucking out'. (see video for the dance style example)



They seemed to have loved the attention they were being given as one did the 'head top' with feet in the air moving in a circular fashion. Another went as far as to partially take off his shirt before bursting into dance, doing something that resembled the popular female move 'Bruck It Dung'. Bruck It Dung is a dance where a person, normally a woman, assumes a squatting stance, before shaking her bottom in a very fast up and down motion. During the display of this dancing skill, one of the males jumped on his counterpart sending onlookers into a frenzy.


Shortly after, a member of the security team arrived and asked them to refrain from dancing in such manner. No sooner had the security personnel left, the dancing started again in an almost similar fashion. Another member of the security then returned and asked the men to leave. However, they refused ignoring the request of the officers. The security personnel got the upper hand when one of the males got rowdy. He was later escorted from the venue. Seeing their friend being escorted from the venue, the others followed suit and made an exit from the event.




ENDS

After speaking to several of the "girls" and persons who were at the soca event which usually precedes the final road march leading up to the annual Trinidad typed carnival season it was clear most of the details were left out of the loop which included the civil disobedience one of the men employed to make his/her point (drag diva on the lgbt party circuit) as her freedom of expression was interrupted and she was told to leave as they were dancing together suggestively with other male friends which is not a new phenomenon at this event annually. Every year however since around 2002 or so we have had some instance where homo-negativity creeps into the mix as outward displays of gender non conforming expressions are opposed vehemently by the public. 

With the closure of the original site of Mass Camp in New Kingston that hosted the soca themed events for these many years and its new home at park near to the National Stadium it is customary where the dance moves in the mainstream dancehall arena is learnt and executed by our party fans in the LGBT community and incorporated into these events as well. It was last year as well that nearby and at the former Mass Camp venue some members of the MSM community were targeted by members of the public in three separate incidents and chased, others were rushed by men at the venue as their "boldness" in dancing and gyrating rubbed some members of the public the wrong way. It was April 29th last year that a set men who were dancing just outside the Mass Camp venue and along Oxford Road some of whom were and still are members of the homeless MSM community were attacked, in a post on sister blog GLBTQ Jamaica on Wordpress entitled Men rushed and beaten in New Kingston the incident was highlighted based on reports and conversations with some of the men and witnesses afterwards. In an excerpt the matter of members of the MSM community attracting unwanted attention to themselves was attributed to the negative response from the public, the post in part read: 


"The behaviour of the men apparently aroused suspicion by some passersby according to reports from several taxi drivers of whom I am familiar with and also who know some of the homeless population as they have developed not so wonderful notoriety in the business district of New Kingston and its environs. So much so that sections of Trafalgar Road nearing the Island Car Rentals where they once congregated and also where the old Super Plus Supermarket used to be has been patrolled heavily now by the police, the car rental company is said to have instituted new security arrangements barring the men from loitering nearby. The gardens and park immediately across the road as well is also being monitored by cops every now and again but seeing it is a public space it is harder to have the men removed I am told unless they are found loitering and maybe charged for such.

Their ruckus behaviour, sometimes vulgar outbursts and fights in open view of the public coupled with their effeminate entertainment and dancing sometimes supported by friends who park their posh top of the line vehicles with loud dancehall music blaring has not helped their situation any, even as I have carried previous entries on this population they have still been ignored to a certain extent save and except for the once a week drop in for showers at a Non Governmental Organizations property and offices and some food items distributed on some Fridays the men have very little sympathy from the rest of the LGBT community, even allies who had supported some of my calls for more to be done for them have since rescinded their stance due to the intolerance of their improper public conduct. The cross dressing and very skimpy clothing used in the transvestite activity has not found favour either with both community and mainstream alike.

So it seems members of the public have also had their share and were not willing to stomach it anymore seeing that the men were dancing wildly and were loud on the Oxford Road stretch all the way passed Emancipation Park onwards, it is believed they were followed by unscrupulous characters who laid siege on them just beside the Police post in New Kingston on Knutsford Boulevard where the final showdown happened, several of the infamous “biker boys” who have been known to attack homeless and other perceived MSMs before in New Kingston as they often congregate on the Hip Strip near the former Asylum Night Club known reopened and known as the Building."





April 2, 2007, a crowd in Montego Bay attacked three men alleged to be gay who were attending a carnival. Witnesses said the crowd chased the men down the street, slashed one man with knives and beat him with a manhole cover also who can forget that incident where at the roadmarch in 2008 two men who were part of the revellers on the final leg of the parade had to beat a hasty retreat in a Hiace bus (photo) as they were accused of winining or gyrating on each other in public, the story at the time said - Men, believed to be gay, earned the wrath of spectators who attacked them damaging a bus and injuring a police officer.

Superintendent Lenval Hutton, who was on the scene, said the parade was moving along Waterloo Road when, upon reaching the intersection with West Kings House Road, some men joined the parade.

The men were allegedly gyrating and wining on each other and this angered spectators who started to stone them. Police, in an attempt to prevent any further incident, placed four of the men into a police bus which was working at the festivities. However, this did not stop the spectators from continuing to attack the men. Someone threw a stone through the window of the bus, shattering one of the windows and cutting the hand of a corporal who was also in the bus.

One of the men who were attacked was slashed across the forehead. The police did not hold anyone in connection with the incident as the perpetrator ran off.


Coming forward to this event however and the so called eviction the men who left the venue said they left as matters became physical and so as to avoid any further problems they left some of the men are used to public confrontations and associated problems and a few of them were present as far back as 2007 at that funeral in Mandeville of a community figure where they resisted the homo negative attack by the public based on their non conforming aesthetics at the time. I too was present at that service, so their resilience in meeting or facing homo negative attacks were well in place and can be called upon on a moments notice. The men said they resisted the security guards demand to stop dancing the way they were while some patrons agreed other patrons who were used to their presence annually at previous venues enjoyed themselves in their own space and even went as far as to suggest the men be left alone. The men who were resolute that they would not be told how to express themselves in public waited until the guard left and commenced enjoying themselves at intervals much to the delight of many of the other patrons who were there many of whom were laughing at the spectacle. 


It is good to see the resolve of the men to stand their ground, it is those men who are on the ground some of whom are effeminate that are the ones who are really carrying the fight in the real world and reminding the public via the gender non conforming aesthetics for the most part and effeminate behaviour while meeting the homosexual stereotypes that gays exist flaming as ever. While we understand that outward displays of affection are not tolerated certainly many msms in particular are making use of relatively safe spaces in mainstream entertainment offerings to express their individuality, soca parties and carnival events are such places and there is a perception held by many that men who are seen in such parades are gay hence some years ago the fusion or sorts of reggae/dancehall into the season so as to attempt to soften the effeminate elements I suppose for the occasion with even the lyrics of some of the songs reflecting anti gay sentiments. Artists such as Bunji Garlin have performed live socarised versions of popular antigay songs such as TOK's Chi Chi Man and other soca acts have their own songs. One of the interesting things about the anti gay sentiment during carnival is that the response tends to be very mild at best in some instances.


You may also want to check out how our own entertainment can be marred by poor logistical planning when on March 6, 2012 we had issues at an event: 

Attack at an LGBT party in western Jamaica ………………

Peace and tolerance


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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

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