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CARIFLAGS - TURN_AROUND CARIBBEAN ON INCLUSION SEXUAL ORIENTATION IN UN RESOLUTION “A POSITIVE CHALLENGE”

in SAINT LUCIA, 22/12/2010

"The Caribbean has sent out “mixed signals” at the vote in the UN general Assembly yesterday. “... yesterday Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada and St; Kitts and Nevis jumped the fence and joined those in favour of inclusion”. However,...the fact that St. Lucia turned out to be the only Caribbean Country to persist in its earlier adopted support for the exclusion..."is a positive challenge" (like) ...the fact that “Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St.Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago abstained, while Cuba was absent altogether at the voting”.

 

Willemstad/Castries, 22 December, 2011 – “The Caribbean needs to take a humanist inclusive stance on LGBTI rights and boldly move to decriminalize same-sex orientation, promote acceptance of gender diversity and transgender people, and develop culturally adapted programs against homo and transphobia that blend in with the Caribbean faith-based tradition of compassion and communal solidarity”. This position was taken by CARIFLAGS’ co-secretary general, Kenita Placide (St; Lucia) and acting co-secretary-general Dudley Ferdinandus (Curacao) after the re-inclusion of the mention of sexual orientation in the resolution on extra-judicial executions, by the General Assembly of the UN. CARIFLAG’s leadership believes that the time for the Caribbean to shed the antiquated notions of exclusion of sexual diversity from the regional government’s human rights agenda has definitely arrived.

According to CARIFLAG’s International Affairs Secretary, Mario Kleinmoedig, the Caribbean has sent out “mixed signals” at the vote in the UN general Assembly yesterday. “Where in a preparatory committee last month the Dominican republic was the only Caribbean country which stood tall in defense of LGBTI rights at the UN level, yesterday Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada and St; Kitts and Nevis jumped the fence and joined those in favour of inclusion”. However, for co-secretary general Kenita Placide the fact that St. Lucia turned out to be the only Caribbean Country to persist in its earlier adopted support for the exclusion of mention of sexual orientation, concocted by the Arab and Islamic states and a group of African States, is a “positive challenge”. Another challenge is the fact that “Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St.Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago abstained, while Cuba was absent altogether at the voting”.

CARIFLAGS’ leadership saluted the hard work of Caribbean LGBTI and general human rights activists, and its member organizations, to sway the position of their individual national governments on the matter, which in the case of 6 countries turned out to be successful. “The activists in countries that abstained or voted against, as in the case of my own country, St. Lucia, should not be disheartened, because this campaign has proven that at least Caribbean Governments have started to listen to their own indigenous LGBTI movements, and are starting to understand that we represent the authentic cry of the last gravely discriminated communities in our lands for justice and equal rights. We are moving forward”, Placide stressed.

For more information:

Kenita Placide: Co-Secretary General
Email: kenita74@yahoo.com Tel: +1 7582845899/7587141765

Mario Kleinmoedig: Secretary International Affairs
Email: curafoko@yahoo.com Tel: +32 474075810

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