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The difficulties of leveraging LGBT legal success in Belize to advance reform

21/9/2020In one breathe,  evangelical, Scott Stirm said, .." we don’t agree with the LGBT bent towards the Equal Opportunities Bill because it is introducing terminology that has never before entered into legislation… and in the next breathe said, “The National Evangelical Association of Belize would be satisfied with the building of an equal opportunity bill that is built together with the churches, with National Aids Commission on an equal platform." I say a turd by any other name is still a turd
The mix message continued in the Amandala when it said, " “Dear National AIDS Commission, UNIBAM, and Human Dignity Trust. Contrary to your belief, we actually do agree with Equal Opportunities. We just don’t agree with using legitimate areas of Equal Opportunity as the icing to cover the cake of L.G.B.T Enforced Equality..." ignoring that the bill covered 19 other characteristics.
Interestingly, The Catholic Bishop issued a letter that I can only described as embarrassin…

The Curtains Always fall in Advancing LGBT Rights in Belize, but...

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11th September, 2020"History despite its wrenching pain cannot be unlived, but if faced with courage, need not be lived again." Maya Angelou. In filling section 53 with the leadership of The University of West Indies Rights Advocacy Project was history making in the region. It generated 300 plus interviews over a decade, nationally and numerous references in the international press.   I was on the world stage meeting diplomats, parliamentarians, prime ministers, Lords and Baroness, often, making interventions about strategy and resources that led to five years of grants. We were the first case that helped launch The Human Dignity Trust global mandate to decriminalize same sex intimacy around the world.  The case triggered, constitutional march protest, a menacing message from an old classmate and  threats from evangelical believers in Belize. But this is not about, threats or legal launches or the high level relationships.There were global decriminalization  meetings in Nam…

COVID 19 Impact on LGBT Belizean

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16/04/2020

The first COVID-19 case was confirmed 23rd, March, 2020 , in San Pedro, a Caye over one hour, off the coast of Belize City. Immediately, the government of Belize declared a state of emergency for 72 hours. As COVID expanded to Belize City and San Ignacio, that partial state of emergency was extended to the entire country starting April 1st after the 3rd case was confirmed by the Belize Ministry of Health.


Enter, colleague, Elisa Castellanos, with hurricane force winds who called me by whats app and peppered me with questions about helping sex workers with food for their children and LGBT sex workers in the northern part of the country. I had no answers!  Obligation and a need to find answers prevailed, as  I began to assess all things COVID-19 and plaster the information on social media for Belizeans to read. I began crossing the L.G.B.T isle to look at persons with disability and promptly engaged the president that head this population as well. Sharing  the food pantry an…

Colonial Blood, political politeness and LGBT Advocacy

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September 19th, 2019

Between 1747 and 1947, it was estimated that 60 million people died in famine in India while Europeans slaughtered 56 million indigenous people that triggered climate change over a 100 year period in North, Central and South America. Today we have International Treaty Bodies like the UN Human Rights Council and International Treaty Obligations and country reviews in Geneva, but what we don't have is a thorough review of how colonialism impacted the lives of hundreds of millions around the World in the names of economic development for our colonizers. The point is made clearer when King Leopold of Belgium committed mass genocide of 10m people in the name of economic development, but little condemnation exists in the history books. It can be said, he killed more people than Jews killed by Hitler, despite this, remains a fundamental blimp in history.
The times may have changed along with the methods, but global systemic racism have simply evolve into other i…

Stop and Frisk in Belize: The impact on LGBT Belizeans who are Afro-descendants

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June 26th, 2019

On March 1st, 2018, the Cabinet Minister, Anthony Martinez told the media that it was illegal to photograph Civilians. According to the Minister, the Attorney General Office has advised cabinet that police officer must cease and desist from the practice. On 24th June 2019, it seems that was lost on Officers in Georgeville Cayo who handcuffed a member of the L.G.B.T Community in Belize, sought to force him behind a police truck, too his photo  and threaten to arrest him for misconduct. The individual was interviewed and recalled his his frustration. 



"I was sitting on the basketball court alone, smoking as always, watching youtube and listening to music, when 4 or 5 police officer pass me, gone to the back asking to searching the areas, i no know what they were looking for.  I put back my earphones in my ear and they pull it out. I was told," I can't have it in!" I tried to walk away and they pulled me back told me to stay. I was told that I could be…

LGBTTI OAS Coalition Declaration 2019 Statement in Medellin Colombia

July , 19th, 2019

THE LGBTTTI COALITION CELEBRATES THE CULMINATION OF ANOTHER SUCCESSFUL GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE OAS DESPITE THE INTENT OF THE HOST GOVERNMENT TO CLOSE SPACES TO CIVIL SOCIETY

Medellin, Colombia June 2019
The Coalition of Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, Transsexuals, Transsexuals, Transvestites and Intersex (LGBTTTI) from Latin America and the Caribbean working within the framework of the Organization of American States (OAS) celebrates the culmination of another successful General Assembly of the OAS, which included the adoption of the Omnibus Resolution on Human Rights, which includes the section entitled "human rights and prevention of discrimination and violence against LGBTI persons", during its 49th regular session of the General Assembly, which took place in MedellĂ­n, Colombia, on June 27 and 28, 2019.
THE DIALOGUE WITH THE HEADS OF DELEGATION THE SECRETARY GENERAL, THE ASSISTANT SECRETARY GENERAL AND THE REPRESENTATIVES OF THE ORGANIZATIONS OF THE CIVIL SOCI…

The Brunei Effect in L.G.B.T.I Global Advocacy

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7/4/2019


Celebrities announced a boycott when Brunei announced its was making gay sex punishable by flogging, or stoning to death. Companies added their voice like TV Choice Magazine, Deutsche Bank, STA Travel and Virgin Australia which has cut a staff travel agreement with the airline.  UN rights chief Michelle Bachelet added her voice to the list of condemnation, "I appeal to the government to stop the entry into force of this draconian new penal code, which would mark a serious setback for human rights protections for the people of Brunei if implemented."




The European Union added its voice with,"Some of the punishments foreseen in the criminal code amount to torture, acts of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment,"It has drawn strong criticism from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the United States, Germany, France and Britain. Amnesty International added their voice as well.

My Colleague Pang Khee Teik from Malaysia points out," As an LGBT …