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Respect and tolerance is fundamental to enabling individuals, regardless of religion, gender, socio-economic status or sexual orientation, to claim and enjoy their human rights.
J-FLAG continues to observe and articulate the implications of the absence of a specific legal instrument to protect and promote the human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Jamaicans. While the enactment of laws alone will not change the engrained discrimination within our society, the presence of discriminatory laws coupled with the lack of specific protections continue to contribute to the high incidences of stigma, discrimination, harassment and other forms of abuse as well as death of Jamaicans who are, and in some cases perceived to be gay or lesbian.
In 2010, J-FLAG received and documented over forty incidences of human rights abuses meted out to members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community in Jamaica. For example, there were two mob invasions of the homes of men suspected to be gay in February. On separate occasions, two females were raped by men who attempted to sexually cleanse them and make them heterosexual women. Additionally, two gay men were violently murdered including a cross-dresser known as “Charm” in December 2010, because they identify as gay.
In the majority of cases, there have been little or no thorough investigation and/or prosecutions for such inhumane acts unless the case has been labeled ‘high profile’. Jamaica’s adoption of the OAS Resolutions 2435 and 2504 on ‘Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity’ in 2008 and 2009 is in keeping with the United Nations Resolution on Extrajudicial Killings which binds Jamaica “to investigate promptly and thoroughly all killings, including… all killings committed for any discriminatory reason, including sexual orientation”. These resolutions symbolize a commitment by the Government of Jamaica to protect persons on the basis of their sexual orientation and gender identity from human rights abuses.
Support for Ugandan Unitarian’s Fight for LGBT Equality.
The Unitarian Universalist Association of Uganda is preparing to take a strong and courageous stand against the Ugandan government's proposed Anti Homosexuality Bill. This legislation, proposed in the Ugandan Parliament, would criminalize homosexuality and enforce penalties of life imprisonment and capital punishment against gays and lesbians. Their allies would also face drastic punishments.
The UU Church of Kampala is one of the few religious organizations in Uganda that is welcoming and supportive of the LGBT community. In 2008 Unitarian Universalist representatives from America met with both gay and straight Ugandans who offered powerful accounts of the terror that the Ugandan LGBT community faces, and the importance of the congregation's support. This visit occurred many months before the current legislation was proposed.
Ugandan UUs plan to hold a conference on February 14, 2010, to highlight the need for an end to discriminatory treatment of the LGBT population—and their allies—in the country. The Conference also has the following goals:
• To achieve permanent, fundamental, real equality for bisexual, gay, lesbian, and transgender people by affecting fundamental changes in the attitudes of society.
• To defeat discriminatory legislation and exclusionary policies and practices.
• To build a strong social movement of LGBT people with a fully representative and activist base.
The conference will include programs about Promoting Equality and Access to Justice, Research, and Lobbying/Advocacy. More than 200 Ugandans from various faith traditions are expected to attend.
UUA President Peter Morales recently wrote,
“Rarely, if ever, has the UU tradition of living our faith been more crucial than it is at this moment. Right now in Uganda we have seen an alarming rise in violence and prejudice toward people who are even assumed to be lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender (LGBT). Right now, Ugandan citizens, including members of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Uganda, fear they will be killed because of this growing culture of oppression against LGBT people.”
Two days after this announcement activist David Kato (pictured) was beaten to death. Before his death, he had recently warned that the lives of LGBT people in Uganda were in danger. A newspaper in Uganda had published the names and addresses of people suspected of being LGBT prominently on its front page. An accompanying article with the headline “Hang Them,” called for the death of the people listed.
Kato and several other Ugandan activists sued the paper and won. The Ugandan High Court ordered the newspaper to pay damages and to cease publishing the names of people it believed were gay or lesbian.
Kato was a Ugandan high school teacher who moved to South Africa in the 1990s after coming out. He returned to Uganda to advocate for gay rights, organizing the first gay rights news conference in Kampala. In his mid-40s, Kato had recently installed an alarm system in his house for protection.
The Ugandan Parliament is considering a bill that would condemn some homosexuals to life in prison or death. It has created a new level of fear for the country’s gay population. “The situation remains too dangerous for us to stand idly by,” Morales said.
Members of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Uganda in Kampala are working to protect LGBT people in Uganda, led by the Rev. Mark Kiyimba. “We cannot, in good conscience, allow them to struggle alone,” Morales said. “Even recent anti-bigotry legislation in Uganda will not stop the hatred and violence aimed at the LGBT community.”
I invite you to sign this petition condemning the proposed Anti-Homosexuality Bill and the current spate of persecution being endured by the LBGT Community in Uganda and urging the Ugandan Government to seek to institute laws which will bring about justice and equality to all its people regardless of race, gender or sexuality.
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."
34. PA Equality
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."
On 20 September 2010 Ben Summerskill addressed an LGBT fringe meeting at the Liberal Democrats conference to argue against marriage equality. He argued that the cost of equality was too much to be justified even though the figures he quoted are largely disputed.
Full story: http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2010/09/20/ben-summserskill-stonewall-opposed-to-gay-marriage-equality-because-it-will-cost-5-billion/
This does not represent the majority view of the LGBT community and therefore we feel that Ben Summerskill is not a suitable person to be leading Stonewall.
As a former student at Lincoln Southeast High School, I know of, and am ashamed of how many times I heard the phrase "that's so gay" to describe a student's dislike of an assignment a teacher was handing out. It is very derogatory towards the LGBT students when a phrase like that is used.
Sirdeaner Walker survives her son Carl Walker-Hoover, who died by suicide after enduring constant bullying at school.
44.1 percent of LGBT students reported being physically harassed at school.
60.8 percent of LGBT students felt unsafe at school because of their sexual orientation.
Check out www.thinkb4youspeak.com for more information.
The Commonwealth has been silence on the issues of Lesbians, Gay, Bisexual & Trangendered (LGBT) people's persecutions and discrimination going on in many of its member-countries. Gay people in these countries are being denied access to healthcare, arrested and jailed, sentenced to death, exposed to public and state homophobia and denied state protection.
In the last Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM 2009) held in Trinadad and Tobago on November 27-29 2009, it was disappointing and appalling that the Commonwealth turned blind eyes to the Ugandan Anti-Homosexual Bill proposing death penalty to gay people and did not issue a statement nor discuss it even when that bill was top of the agenda for HUman Rights through out the world at that time.
Also, on the case of 2 young men arrested and detained in Malawi, charged on accusation of homosexuality since December 29 2009, the Commonwealth has kept mute and made no official statement. This means that some citizens of the Commonwealth can be denied their right just because they are gay or lesbians.
This continued silence of the Commonwealth therefore sends the wrong message to these countries and the general public that the Commonwealth supports these injustice and discrimination.
Of the 53 Commonwealth member-countries, 40 still criminalise same-sex relations, mostly under anti-gay laws that were originally imposed by the British colonial government in the nineteenth century. This is disgraceful to the Commonwealth when its core principles includes equality, non-discrimination, opportunity for all, liberty of the individual and human dignity.
If the Commonwealth continue in this silence, it is not only living short of its own principles, but it is assuring these countries that they can also ignore these pillars of justice.
Please sign this petition with us.
In accordance with UCF’s Non-Discrimination Policy which vows to “promote equal opportunity policies and practices” for all its students and faculty, we ask that UCF fulfill its promise to protect ALL from discrimination by incorporating gender identity into the doctrine.
To ensure a safe educational environment for all employees and students, free from harassment, UCF must include gender identity in its listing with other targeted minorities such as “race, sex, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital status, parental status, veteran’s status, and sexual orientation”.
In 1983, the United States Food and Drug Administration began to require all blood to be screened. One such required screening was for what we now know as Human Immunodeficiency Virus. Very little was known about the disease and at the time it was known as "gay related immune deficiency." Science has now shown that HIV is not a "gay disease."
The American Red Cross, the naiton's leader in blood collection, has criticized the FDA's policy as "medically and scientifically unwarranted."
All blood that is collected is screened for the HIV virus.
LGBT people are continually mis- or under-represented in the media. As found in GLAAD's 2008 study (see link 1) only 1.1% of all regular characters in the 2007-08 broadcast television schedule were LGBT.
Advertising (especially in the prime time 'advert breaks') reaches a massive audience (an average of about 9 million viewers) and can help to present a very positive message to those who need/would benefit from it.
IKEA have had lots of adverts featuring LGB&T people, both on TV and in print. Their catalogues also feature gay couples and families. In 2007, IKEA ran an ad campaign titled 'Living Room,' which aired across Europe and America. The ad featured a series of families in different living rooms, ending with a bi-racial gay male couple and their daughter, and the voiceover: 'Why shouldn't sofas come in flavours, just like families?' The ad won an award in America from the Commercial Closet Association, a charity which campaigns for positive LGB recognition in advertising. (Link 2)
DFS adverts famously centre around a 'living area' with a family, couple or person in them (Link 3). None of these have ever featured an LGBT family or couple and could quite easily do so.
The 'Pink Pound' (the LGBT market) is worth an estimated £70 million per year in the UK (Link 4).
Link 1: http://tinyurl.com/ya2mpoo
Link 2: http://www.commercialcloset.org/common/adlibrary/video_large.cfm?AdDetail.video=1004-IKEA-Living%20Room.flv&clientID=11064
Link 3: http://www.dfs.co.uk/tv-advertisements
Link 4: http://www.clearchannel.co.uk/content.aspx?ID=276&ParentID=93&MicrositeID=0&Page=1
We, the undersigned, ask Pasadena Area Community College District Board of Trustees and the Pasadena City College Administration to create a safe environment for all students regardless of Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity.
For all Disabled persons and their opposite gender caretakers and parents accompanied by opposite gender children by creating and providing gender neutral restrooms on campus.
The Following was documented October 27, 2007 and to my knowledge has not been carried out.
We request the following:
1. Immediate conversion of at least two current restrooms (one on each side of campus) from gender specific to gender neutral and for those restrooms to be located in a safe and highly visible areas.
2. All future construction, including those currently in progress include gender neutral restrooms.
3. Mandatory sensitivity training for all Faculty, Classified and Management Employees.
We belive that the City of San Francisco and its taxpayers should not reward people, with our money, who hate gays and deny our civil rights. The City should not award contracts to Counties or States that voted for Proposition 8. For example: The San Francisco Board of Supervisors is considering a contract to pay Yuba County, CA $1.5 million every year to accept our city’s trash. However, Yuba County residents and elected officials overwhelmingly supported Proposition 8 and their elected leaders have been leading the fight to deny same sex marriage.: Yuba County’s record on same sex marriage:
•67.6% of Yuba County voters supported Prop. 8
•The Yuba County Board of Education voted 6-1 to support Prop. 8 because they linked “successful children to having a mother and father in the home
•Former Yuba County Supervisor, now Assemblyman, Dan Logue was one of five politicians that who filed the lawsuit challenging the Supreme Courts ruling in favor of allowing same sex marriages
We ask the San Francisco County Board of Supervisors to oppose this plan and send a message that hate will not be rewarded.
Over the past quarter of a century, the Gay Games have emerged as a powerful vehicle for change, engendering a global LGBT sports movement and the creation of numerous regional and international sports organizations. Now some, dismissing the human rights value of LGBT sports activity, have called for the Gay Games to 'de-emphasize' its sports component and focus major attention on human rights conferences.
The discussion and issues are well documented online at lgbtsportsfuture.wordpress.com. Among the objections to having a major conference component, which would be subsidized by the athletic community, are onerous costs which reduce athlete registration and thereby diminish the geographic diversity of the event, strain of resources, duplication of efforts, and reduced return on investment by supportive LGBT sports organizations.
There are many homophobic barriers that continue to exist in sports; we still have a long way to conclusively destroy the stereotypes that hold us back and provide sports empowerment to those who need it most. We believe the Federation of Gay Games needs to hear the voices of our athletes and leaders to keep them focused on the Games that Changed the World.
Discriminatie en onveiligheid binnen AZC'S
LOGO has only aired a hand full of African Americans.
Robert E. Lee High School is a public school located in Montgomery, Alabama. They have been given a bad reputation over the past few years but the school itself is wonderful and has many great people. Though, they do not have a Gay-Straight Alliance [GSA].
This petition is encouraging a GSA in the school to help those who must hide who they are, and those who have no one to turn to.
A GSA would create a safe and welcoming environment for students to go and be accepted openly regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. It would also give students the chance to participate in LGBT community events such as the Day of Silence, National Coming Out Day, and No Name Calling Week.
The group itself doesn't even have to be named "Gay-Straight Alliance," due to the misconceptiont that this is only a dating service for LGBT teens.
Many other names are avaliable, such as "Project Rainbow," "Pride Alliance," "Common Ground," "Coexist", "Spectrum," or even the "Straight-Gay Alliance." It is possible to come up with other creative names, but these are simply suggestions.
As a sophmore attending Lee High School, and an LGBT teen myself, I personally feel there is no where to turn within the school for advice or solace. I feel alone and constantly question if maybe there are others like me? The idea for a GSA came to me because there might jsut be other students who seek help, or agree [even if they are straight] that LGBT people are equal and there should be no violence towards them. I am a member of the Lee P.A.W.S. Club which is all about animals, so I do have experience with clubs.
My ultimate goals for the GSA would be to promote acceptance throughout the school, prevent violence against other LGBT students, promote and encourage participation in fun and active events, notice those straight people who do accept LGBT people for who they are,and to give a safe place to LGBT students where they can come together for help, advice, and community activities.
The purpose of this group is to lobby the Terrance Higgins Trust, the leading HIV and sexual health charity in the UK to change its stance on the ban on men who sleep with men.
WHAT DO TERRANCE HIGGINS TRUST SAY ON THE BLOOD BAN:
We believe that the current policy of the National Blood Service is justifiable and was based on the best available evidence when it was drawn up. Unless a subsequent review finds that risks to the blood service have changed the current policy is sensible and pragmatic.
It is our belief that the blood ban is based on fundamentally flawed assumptions and stereotypes of gay/bisexual men and is therefore unjustifiable and discriminatory.
Even a man who has had gay sex only once in his life, perhaps more than 40 years ago, is prohibited from donating blood. He is banned even though he last had sex with another man BEFORE the outbreak of HIV.
We are all constantly bombarded with emotionally charged adverts calling for us to donate blood and to prevent a large segment of society from donating blood is simply unacceptable.
ISN’T IT DISCRIMINATION TO BAN GAY MEN FROM GIVING BLOOD?
What THT say:
Gay men aren’t banned from giving blood, men who have sex with men (MSM) are. The ban is based on a specific behaviour not on sexuality in itself. A man who self defines as gay but has never had sex with another man is welcome to give blood. A man who does not self define as gay but has had sex with another man is banned.
What we say:
Whilst this is technically true, it is a meaningless point to make. Most gay men have had sex with another man at least once on their lives. They are all banned. It is discriminatory.
HOW IS IT FAIR THAT A GAY MAN WITH ONE SEXUAL PARTNER IS BANNED, WHILE A HETEROSEXUAL MAN CAN HAVE 300 SEXUAL PARTNERS AND ISN’T BANNED?
What THT say:
It’s important to look at how statistical modelling is done. A straight man with 300 sexual partners would be a statistical anomaly. The projections are based on research about what happens across populations and the truth still is that men who have sex with men are far more likely to contract HIV during the course of their regular sex life than men who have sex with women, or women who have sex with men. Anomalies do exist but it is still reasonable to run statistical projections and assessments of risk based on general epidemiological data rather than individual cases when looking at the integrity of the blood supply.
What We Say:
Whether it is 300, 200, 50 or 20, people who have many sexual partners are more at risk from passing on HIV and other sexually transmitted illnesses then a gay man with one sexual partner. A man who has had 300 sexual encounters may be an anomaly, but he is an anomaly that could lead to HIV being transferred through blood. It is more reasonable to look at each case individually then rely on statistical models.
In New York City a very disproportionate number (up to 40%) of homeless youth identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT).
Even more disturbing are reports that these young people often face discrimination and at times physical assault in some of the very places they have to go for help. Despite this, there is currently no permanent housing with supportive services for this population in New York City.
West End Intergenerational Residence, in collaboration with musical artist Cyndi Lauper and her manager, Lisa Barbaris, is seeking to address this issue by creating the True Colors Residence (TCR), a new construction with 30 studio apartments and program space on 154th Street in Central Harlem.
We’ll be building it from the ground up so our residents will have a brand new, modern building with studio apartments for each resident, as well as both indoor and outdoor community space to socialize or attend education and recreation programs. Each resident will be responsible for paying affordable rent based on their income and will receive ongoing assistance in obtaining employment best suited to their individual interests and skills.
Although TCR will not require participation in its programs, a variety of social and educational support services will be available to all who request them. Our primary goal is to provide a physically and emotionally safe and supportive environment that will empower our young residents to be the self-loving, happy, and successful individuals they were meant to be.
ONLY MEMBERS OF MANHATTAN'S COMMUNITY BOARD 10 SHOULD SIGN THIS PETITION. Manhattan Community Board 10 encompasses Central Harlem and the Polo Grounds – bounded approximately by Fifth Avenue (on the east) and St. Nicholas Ave (on the west) and Central Park North (on south) and 160th Street and/or the Harlem River (on north). If you are unsure whether or not you live in CD10, please check here: http://www.nyc.gov/html/dcp/pdf/lucds/mn10profile.pdf.
You must include your home address along with your name for your signature to be valid. WE MUST BE ABLE TO VERIFY THAT YOU LIVE WITHIN COMMUNITY BOARD 10. Please note, however, that street addresses will not be viewable by the public and will only be seen by representatives of West End, TCR, and Community Board 10.
For more information on West End and the True Colors Residence, please visit www.intergenerational.org.
Thank you for your support!
In recent years the Labour government has enforced numerous acts of legislation to challenge discrimination within the workplace based upon race, age, gender, sexual affiliation etc.
This is to be credited and advances in regards to challenging homophobia have being made and continue to do so.
However over many years I have come to recognize that imposed laws tackling homophobia have simply not being sufficient in challenging attitudes ingrained within the workplace resulting in homophobia remaining rife, often under the surface.
I believe that better investment; whether that be financial incentives for company training or building up gradual awareness is far more likely to be successful as opposed to enforced legislation, which results in individuals, particularly in managerial positions taking an hostile attitude towards the LGBT community.
While I am in full awareness that training detracts from employee time, In my view it is essential to highlight a few facts as found on the Stonewall website:
*Gay people contributed £70 million pounds to the UK economy.
*Dedicated over 3, 100, 000, 00 hours to the workplace
*Gay staff ‘out’ at work are 20% to 30% more productive.
Given such a large role that the LGBT have in making our economy I believe it is time to invest a little back.
On 29th June 2008, OutWest and The Richmond Arms in Richmond UK organised a Funday to raise money for two charities who support people with HIV/AIDS. In tandem to the Street Party organised and approved by the London Borough of Richmond, OutWest requested the use of Little Green in Richmond to stage a sports day.
Richmond refused and the resulting correspondence between OutWest and councillors and officers of the London Borough of Richmond have led OutWest to believe that there is an element of Homophobia in Richmond's decision.
California Democrats have a long tradition of supporting civil rights for all individuals.
As such, Marriage Equality (same sex marriage) is a civil rights issue of which explicit support belongs in the California Democratic Party platform.
Other state Democratic Parties, such as Iowa and Massachusetts, explicitly state in their party platforms that they support equal marital rights for all consenting adults, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identification.
It is time for the California Democratic Party to add its commitment to marriage equality to the CDP Party Platform.
On July 4th, 2007 recording artist Buju Banton will be performing at the African/Caribbean festival in Chicago’s Washington Park. Buju Banton has created and performs music urging the shooting and burning of gay people.
His song Boom Bye Bye instructs listeners to kill gay men. The inclusion of this artist at any venue in our fair city is unacceptable. The facts that he is invited to perform on public ground, on Independence Day, and is sponsored by the Chicago Parks District, Chrysler, Western Union and the Illinois Art Council just to name a few severely harms the city’s reputation as a haven of respect for all its citizens.
For more information on Buju Banton go to life.sankofaway.org.
Please take immediate action to press the Nigerian government to end mistreatment of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender people. Speak out openly and strongly against the horribly oppressive anti-gay legislation bill entitled “The Prohibition of Relationships Between Persons of the Same Sex, Celebration of Marriage by Them and for Other Matters Connected Therewith.”
The bill seeks to imprison anyone for:
• membership in a gay group
• attending a gay meeting or protest
• advocating for gay equality
• donating money to a gay organization
• hosting or visiting a gay website
• publication or possession of gay safer sex advice
• renting or selling property to a gay couple
• publishing, selling or loaning a gay book or video
This bill affects not only GLBT people, but the people who love and support them. This bill creates an oppressive environment for everyone. Please take action immediately to stop the oppressive Nigerian Bill, which is a threat to human rights everywhere. If passed this bill would restrict freedoms of GLBT people and defenders of human rights. It would have a devastating effect on the fight against HIV/AIDS in Nigeria. As you said in your Democratic National Convention speech “it is my fundamental belief that I am my brothers keeper.”