Menu
demerara logo
 

Listen Live

android
apple
blackberry
 
 

Guyana's gay rights organisation preparing for parliamentary select committee

Left to Right: Guyanese singer Nhojj, Co-Chairs of SASOD, Namela Baynes and Joel Simpson Left to Right: Guyanese singer Nhojj, Co-Chairs of SASOD, Namela Baynes and Joel Simpson

Guyana’s lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community is preparing their submissions for a parliamentary select committee for the repeal of sodomy and other laws they say discriminate against gays and lesbians.

Co-Chair of the Society Against Sexual Orientation Discrimination (SASOD), Joel Simpson said the Guyana Equality Forum (GEF), a coalition of like-minded civil society organisations,” is being geared to make submissions to the bipartisan committee.

Partly in keeping with a recommendation by the United Nations Universal Period Review on Human Rights, the committee would by year-end or early 2014 begin receiving submissions on scrapping the colonial laws against buggery and cross-dressing.

The GEF includes Red Thread, Justice Institute Guyana. Also interfacing with SASOD is the SASOD is the fath-based organisation, Guyana Faith and HIV Coalition.

Simpson also announced SASOD’s plans to establish a secretariat for two years to press parliament to take action after the select committee completes its work and submits its report to the 65-seat House. “…that the special select committee doesn’t just prepare a report which looks great to Geneva when we come up for UPR (Universal Periodic Review) in 2014 and then that report languishes some where.

“That report should be brought to the House for further consideration and debate and then action in terms of repealing bad laws and amendments to make existing laws better and stronger and extend protection based on sexual orientation and gender identity so that LGBT Guyanese can be included,” he said.

Guyana’s Chief Justice Ian Chang is expected to deliver judgment later this year on whether laws against buggery and cross-dressing are unconstitutional after four of seven male cross-dressers who were charged in 2009.

Since its establishment 10 years ago, SASOD has so far unsuccessfully pushed for Guyana’s constitution to be amended to guarantee non-discrimination of persons on the basis of their sexual orientation. That provision was defeated in a conscious vote in 2003.

Measuring the level of homophobia in Guyana now compared to a decade ago, the SASOD co-chair said more heterosexuals are supporting his organisation’s work in the performing arts. “That just demonstrates in a very, very vivid way in my mind the shift that we are seeing that stigma associated with supporting LGBT issues is not as strong as it was back then and people are willing to be associated with gay rights organisation,” he said.

Unlike the past when the discourse appeared to have been focussed only on religious perspectives, Simpson believed the discourse has evolved into one that addresses human rights and public policy. “Subjective religious beliefs are not the basis for decision-making when it comes to these issues. It’s the basis for your own personal moral engagement about how you determine your own behaviour,” he said.

SASO boasts what it says is a “strict child protection policy.”

back to top
(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

Recent News

Prev Next Page:
Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana to set up Joint Commission

31 July, 2015

Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana to set up Joint Commission

Reproduced from Trinidad Express TRINIDAD and Tobago and Guyana have agreed to ...

Communities Minster unearths ghost fund for Amerindians, insists on greater control by regions

31 July, 2015

Communities Minster unearths ghost fund for Amerindians, ins…

by Zena Henry Local democratic organs are being pushed to take greater control ...

UK sugar company says "complex" future faces sugar industry

31 July, 2015

UK sugar company says "complex" future faces sugar…

The United Kingdom-based Tate and Lyle Sugars- one of Guyana’s major sugar buyer...

Government to cancel opposition diplomatic passports if not returned to the State

31 July, 2015

Government to cancel opposition diplomatic passports if not …

by Zena Henry The Ministry of Foreign Affairs will again request the return of ...

UN Secretary General in telephone conversation with Pres. Granger

31 July, 2015

UN Secretary General in telephone conversation with Pres. Gr…

United Nations Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon on Thursday held a telephone conve...

Ex-cop accused of gun-related offences shot

31 July, 2015

Ex-cop accused of gun-related offences shot

A former policeman, who was previously charged with robbery and attempted murder...

Granger-Maduro talks not ruled out

31 July, 2015

Granger-Maduro talks not ruled out

Guyana’s President, David Granger will be open to talks with his Venezuelan coun...

Defence Board to discuss GDF Officer's name in govt vehicle scam

31 July, 2015

Defence Board to discuss GDF Officer's name in govt vehicle …

The link between former Guyana Defence Force (GDF) Coast Guard Commander, Gary B...

Guyana to lose GUY$1 billion annually after Environmental Tax is repealed

30 July, 2015

Guyana to lose GUY$1 billion annually after Environmental Ta…

Guyana stands to lose at least GUY$1 billion annually after the National Assembl...

Several constitutional bodies now financially independent

30 July, 2015

Several constitutional bodies now financially independent

The National Assembly on Thursday passed the Fiscal Management and Accountabilit...

Local Govt Elections likely in December

30 July, 2015

Local Govt Elections likely in December

by Zena Henry The long-awaited Local Government Elections are expected to held ...

Government gazettes Maritime Regulations to delimit internal waters

30 July, 2015

Government gazettes Maritime Regulations to delimit internal…

by Zena Henry The Guyanese government on Thursday announced that steps have bee...

“Innocent until proven guilty”, charged former ministers remain on PPP Parliamentary list

30 July, 2015

“Innocent until proven guilty”, charged former ministers rem…

The People’s Progressive Party (PPP) will not be making any rash decisions as it...

Budget Day is August 10

30 July, 2015

Budget Day is August 10

Guyana's National Budget for 2015 will be tabled in the National Assembly on Mon...

BREAKING: Fmr. Health Minister Bheri Ramsaran appears in court for insulting Sherlena Nageer

30 July, 2015

BREAKING: Fmr. Health Minister Bheri Ramsaran appears in cou…

Former Minister of Health, Bheri Ramsaran was Thursday arraigned on a charge of ...

Lotto monies for Consolidated Fund

30 July, 2015

Lotto monies for Consolidated Fund

Minister of Finance Winston Jordan will soon issue an order for the Lotto Fund b...

NGO helps improve livelihood in Pomeroon community

30 July, 2015

NGO helps improve livelihood in Pomeroon community

The almost 1,000 residents of Akawini, Pomeroon River are benefitting from a GUY...

New Amsterdam Hospital nurse poisoned; police to grill her colleagues

30 July, 2015

New Amsterdam Hospital nurse poisoned; police to grill her c…

Investigators were Thursday continuing their probe into the alleged poisoning of...

Former Minister, subordinate will not face High Court trial on larceny, forgery charges

29 July, 2015

Former Minister, subordinate will not face High Court trial …

by Zena Henry The criminal trial against former Minister of Public Service, Jen...

Asian wood companies told to start value added production or face contract termination

29 July, 2015

Asian wood companies told to start value added production or…

Bai Shan Lin Forest Development Inc. and Vaitarna Holdings Private Inc. will hav...

Former Health Minister will be charged in “slap and strip” episode -Crime Chief

29 July, 2015

Former Health Minister will be charged in “slap and strip” e…

by Zena Henry Former Health Minister Bheri Ramsaran could be the next member of...

Possible multi-million dollar scam at Public Service Ministry; no fingers pointing at Jenny Westford

29 July, 2015

Possible multi-million dollar scam at Public Service Ministr…

Governance Minister, Raphael Trotman, on Wednesday, confirmed reports of financi...

Berbice bridge tolls to be reduced

29 July, 2015

Berbice bridge tolls to be reduced

Minister of Governance, Raphael Trotman, today announced that the Berbice River ...

Fmr govt minister Jennifer Westford, PSM Personnel Officer on total of GUY$2 million bail for vehicle scam

29 July, 2015

Fmr govt minister Jennifer Westford, PSM Personnel Officer o…

Former Public Service Minister Dr. Jennifer Westford and her Personnel Officer, ...

Govt using DPP, police to go after PPP members, says party

28 July, 2015

Govt using DPP, police to go after PPP members, says party

Just hours after police were advised to charge former Public Service Minister Dr...

CJIA expansion project still suspended

28 July, 2015

CJIA expansion project still suspended

by Zena Henry The Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) expansion project r...

UN to form mission to deal with Venezuela, Guyana dispute: Maduro

28 July, 2015

UN to form mission to deal with Venezuela, Guyana dispute: M…

UNITED NATIONS, United States (AFP) – A UN mission will travel to Venezuela and ...

Bandit struck down, leaving gun and cash behind

28 July, 2015

Bandit struck down, leaving gun and cash behind

A bandit was Tuesday afternoon knocked down by a car, leaving behind a hand gun ...

Recommended News Links

Recommended Radio Links

Other News and Opinion Wesbsites