Promoting Equality and Human Rights in Jamaica
Join Human Rights First for a reception marking the International Day Against Homophobia.
The criminalization of homosexuality in Jamaica dates back to the 1864 Offences Against the Person Act, which calls for a punishment of up to 10 years of hard labor for those convicted of the “abominable crime of buggery.” Members of the LGBT community are denied access to basic rights and services, resulting in alarming rates of homelessness and HIV. Furthermore, the law breeds a permissive climate for violence against LGBT people.
Despite this long history of persecution and marginalization, brave members of the Jamaican LGBT community are working to change the trajectory of the rights of LGBT people in Jamaica, opening spaces for dialogue, advocating for equal rights for the LGBT population, and working to ultimately change the law. In honor of the International Day Against Homophobia, join Human Rights First for a reception to discuss the future of human rights in Jamaica and the essential role that Jamaican civil society is playing to promote respect for human rights. Jamaican human rights activist Angeline Jackson, Executive Director of Quality of Citizenship Jamaica, will discuss the on-the-ground situation, the ongoing efforts of civil society groups in Jamaica, and the ways in which collaboration among members of civil society in the US and Jamaica, as well as work with Members of the US Congress, can promote respect for the human rights of all Jamaican citizens.
The Honorable Barbara Lee (Invited)
U.S. Representative for California’s 13th Congressional District
The Honorable David Cicilline
U.S. Representative for Rhode Island’s 1st Congressional District
The Honorable Ileana Ros-Lehtinen
U.S. Representative for Florida’s 27th Congressional District
Executive Director of Quality of Citizenship Jamaica
President and CEO, Human Rights First
Refreshments and hors d’oeuvres provided
RSVP’s appreciated but not required. Email Caroline Phillips at [email protected]
May 21, 2014, 6:00-8:00pm
Rayburn House Office Building
45 Independence Ave SW, Washington, D.C. 20515