Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2019-02-13
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Trinidad and Tobago: Court Overturns Same-Sex Intimacy Ban
From a press release
2018-04-13

facebook twitter google +1 reddit email


( Washington, DC, April 13, 2018 ) — The High Court of Justice in Trinidad and Tobago ruled on April 12, 2018, that the country's laws criminalizing same-sex intimacy between consenting adults are unconstitutional, Human Rights Watch said today. It is a resounding win for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender ( LGBT ) activists in the country and in particular for Jason Jones, the claimant in the case.

Section 13 of Trinidad and Tobago's Sexual Offenses Act punishes "buggery," or anal intercourse, punishable by sentences of up to 25 years in prison. Section 16 of the same act, on "serious indecency," stipulates that a person who is sexually intimate with a person of the same sex without having intercourse is liable to imprisonment for up to five years.

"The High Court in Trinidad and Tobago, with this ruling, made a powerful statement that the legal sanctions on same-sex intimacy impinge on basic rights, ranging from privacy and family life to freedom of thought and expression," said Boris Dittrich, LGBT rights advocacy director at Human Rights Watch. "This is a major step forward in a region where the rights of LGBT people are restricted."

Jones, who challenged the law, is an openly gay citizen of Trinidad and Tobago who left the country because of severe discrimination on the basis of his sexual orientation. He visits the country from time to time and contended in his lawsuit that the buggery laws forced him to forego consensual sexual relations with a male partner or risk imprisonment.

The ruling affirms that the case was about the dignity of the person and not about the will of the majority or any religious debate.

"The court's reasoning that people must be able to make decisions about whom they love and with whom they wish to form a family, without having to live under the constant threat that any moment they may be prosecuted, is very strong," Dittrich said.

The court also reasoned in its ruling that this threat is sanctioned by the state, and that it serves to justify the belief that LGBT people are criminals and are therefore deemed to be of a lesser value than other people.

The ruling will lend support to other human rights activists in the Caribbean to turn to the courts and seek to overturn their own countries' criminal provisions banning consensual same-sex acts. Many former British colonies in the Caribbean retain colonial-era laws banning same-sex relations. Trinidad and Tobago's High Court is the second court in the Caribbean to strike down these laws as unconstitutional, following a similar ruling in Belize in 2016.

Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi said on April 13th that he would appeal the High Court ruling.

"The government of Trinidad and Tobago should accept and embrace LGBT equality, not fight against it," Dittrich said. "The court is saying that everyone in Trinidad and Tobago deserves to be treated with dignity and afforded the same basic rights, as enshrined in the Constitution — an idea the government ought to put its weight behind."

For more Human Rights Watch reporting on LGBT rights, please visit:

www.hrw.org/topic/lgbt-rights .


facebook twitter google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Smollett dropped from rest of 'Empire' season 2019-02-22 - The producers of the Fox TV show Empire are dropping Jussie Smollett's character from the final two episodes of this season "to avoid ...


Gay News

More Smollett news, controversial letter, Foxx recuses self 2019-02-20 - More developments have taken place regarding the case of Jussie Smollett—the openly gay Empire actor who claimed he was attacked in a hate-motivated ...


Gay News

WORLD Trans Thai PM candidate, anti-LGBT attacks, intersex ruling 2019-02-20 - Pauline Ngarmpring—who has been a CEO and sports promoter—is pursuing a bid to become Thailand's first transgender prime minister, Bendigo Advertiser reported. She ...


Gay News

Sharon Bottoms Mattes, known for '90s child-custody case, dies at 48 2019-02-18 - Sharon Bottoms Mattes—a central figure in a closely watched 1990s LGBT-related child-custody case—has died at 48, according to The Washington Post. Mattes ended ...


Gay News

Suspects released in Jussie Smollett case 2019-02-16 - Chicago authorities, on Feb. 15, released two brothers of Nigerian descent (identified by other media outlets as Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo) who had ...


Gay News

Police questioning people of interest in Jussie Smollett case (UPDATE) 2019-02-14 - Chicago authorities are questioning two people of interest who were seen on surveillance cameras in the area where openly gay Empire actor Jussie ...


Gay News

After landmark decision, ABA issues guidance for judges performing same-sex marriages 2019-02-14 - CHICAGO, Feb. 14, 2019 — The American Bar Association Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility released today a formal opinion giving judges ...


Gay News

WORLD Alan Turing, Mexico murder, 'Boy Erased' 2019-02-13 - The late Brit Alan Turing—known as the father of the modern computer—was recently named the greatest person of the 20th century during BBC's ...


Gay News

NATIONAL Trans military ban, Black icons, Edie Windsor, trans art exhibit 2019-02-13 - A high-ranking officer in the California National Guard said that the group will not comply with Donald Trump's transgender military ban, LGBTQ Nation ...


Gay News

HRC urges Congress to pass FAMILY Act 2019-02-13 - The Human Rights Campaign ( HRC ) called on Congress to advance the FAMILY Act—a measure the organization called critically important legislation that ...


 



Copyright © 2019 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.