The “Erasing 76 Crimes” blog focuses on the human toll of 76+ countries’ anti-LGBTI laws and the struggle to repeal them.
Editor/publisher: Colin Stewart
Colin Stewart is a 40-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. After his retirement from paid newspaper work in 2012, he launched the Erasing 76 Crimes blog and helped with the Spirit of 76 campaign that assembled a multi-national team of 26 LGBTI rights activists to advocate for change during the International AIDS Conference in Washington, D.C., in July 2012. For more profile information, see Google Plus. Contact him via Twitter @colinstewart or @76crimes or by email to cestewart (at) cox.net or to stewacster (at) gmail.com. Mailing address: 21 Marseille, Laguna Niguel CA 92677 USA.
Writer: Maurice Tomlinson
Maurice Tomlinson of Jamaica was the inaugural winner of the David Kato Vision and Voice Award and has been involved in HIV and AIDS and LGBTI activism in the Caribbean for over 12 years. An attorney-at-law, he leads and supports legal challenges seeking the repeal of anti-sodomy and homophobic laws around the Caribbean. His current focus is the project LGBTI Aware Caribbean, which provides critical LGBTI awareness training for key sectors across the Caribbean. Contact him by email via 76crimes (at) gmail.com.
Writer: Mike Daemon
Mike Daemon is the pseudonym of the founder and presenter of the No Strings podcasts, based in Port Harcourt, Nigeria, which provide a voice for the country’s LGBTIQ community. The first of their kind in Nigeria, they are presented in the form of a traditional radio program that chronicles the struggles, tells the stories, and reports on issues affecting the lives of LGBTIQ Nigerians. The Erasing 76 Crimes blog helps to support the podcasts’ online distribution and publishes Mke Daemon’s writings, which are based on his podcast interviews. To listen to past podcasts or to look for future ones, visit the No Strings website. Contact him by email via info (at) nostringspodcast.com.
Writer: Joseph Odero
Joseph Odero is the pseudonym for a Kenyan human rights defender whose name is withheld for reasons of security. His particular focus as an activist is working to promote tolerance for LGBTI people within the faith communities of rural Kenya. His first article for the blog came in the wake of several preachers’ anti-homosexuality sermons, when four men attacked a gay street vendor in west Kenya, raped him, and set his home on fire. Odero’s second article was based on a hospital room interview with Muhadh Ishmael, an intersex Muslim who died of the injuries he suffered after his family turned him over to men who maimed him after accusing him of shaming his family for not behaving like a woman. Contact him by email via 76crimes (at) gmail.com.
Writer: Erin Royal Brokovitch
Erin Royal Brokovitch is the pseudonym for a Cameroonian human rights defender whose name is withheld for his protection. He fills the role of reporter covering LGBTI issues in Cameroon, where our previous reporter, Eric Ohena Lembembe, was murdered in July 2013. He is an experienced activist advocating for justice for LGBTI Cameroonians and against HIV/Aids. Both as a journalist and as an activist, he works to promote health education and to help keep gay and lesbian Cameroonians out of prison, despite the Cameroonian law against same-sex intimacy. Contact him by email via 76crimes (at) gmail.com.
Writer and French editor: Ruby Irene Pratka
Ruby Irene Pratka is a bilingual (French/English) freelance writer, editor and translator based in Quebec City, Canada. She never lets a trip go by without a good story and has filed for Toronto-based LGBT magazine Xtra from Russia, the Balkans, Morocco, Burundi and the US. She covers migration, mental health, the LGBT community, social development aboriginal issues, obscure sports and frankly just about everything for several Quebec media outlets. She blogs at http://yearofnofear.wordpress.com. She is a proud queer woman and advocates for LGBT and migrants’ rights. Ruby contributes occasional English-language feature stories to the blog and is currently serving as its French editor; she welcomes any corrections on the French-language blog 76 Crimes en français, which should be directed to irenepratka1 (at) gmail.com.
Editor emeritus: Denis LeBlanc
Denis LeBlanc is an HIV+ gay activist based in Ottawa, Canada, and has been an active volunteer in the Gay Liberation Movement since 1971 and later with the HIV/AIDS movement. He was editor of GoInfo, Ottawa’s monthly LGBT tabloid newspaper, from 1982 to 1988. For more profile information, see his biography in the Canadian Gay and Lesbian Archives. See his occasional blogs: Gay and Positive Issues. Contact him by email at: denis_leblanc (at) rogers.com or send mail to: 15 Grant Street, Ottawa ON K1Y 2W8 Canada.
Writer: Jean Marc Yao
Jean Marc Yao of the Ivory Coast is a human rights defender who works at the Interafrican Association for the Promotion of Health and Human Rights (IPSDH). An anthropologist and Ph.D. candidate in philosophy, he is a member of the Ivorian League for Human Rights (LIDHO) and a consultant at the Association of Midwives of Côte d’Ivoire (ASF-CI) and at Alternative Côte d’Ivoire. He has contributed several articles to this blog about homophobic mob attacks on the anti-AIDS, pro-LGBT rights organization Alternative Cote d’Ivoire. Contact him on Facebook or by email via 76crimes (at) gmail.com.
Writer: The Rev. Canon Albert Ogle
The Rev. Canon Albert Ogle, a gay Episcopal priest at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Millbrook, N.Y., is known around the world for his work in support of LGBT rights and HIV prevention. He is founder and president of St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which focuses on human rights, health, education and faith by providing resources for emerging grass roots organizations and leaders in the Global South. He was youth director at the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center in 1983 and executive director of the Center in 1985. Since then, he has served at several Episcopal churches in California and New York. Contact him by email at: vicar (at) stpeterslithgow.org.
Writer: Miles Tanhira
Miles Rutendo Tanhira of Zimbabwe, currently living in Sweden, is a journalist, LGBTI rights activist, human rights defender, feminist and pacifist. Miles also writes for Sweden-based SOGI News and works with various local, regional and international steering committees on youth, LGBTI and peace issues. Miles’ account of a 2012 police raid on the offices of Gays and Lesbians of Zimbabwe (GALZ) appeared in the blog under the headline “A night in hell, Zimbabwe style” and later in the book From Wrongs to Gay Rights. Contact Miles by email at: sokomylz (at) gmail.com.
Writer: Eric Lembembe
Eric Ohena Lembembe of Cameroon wrote some of this blog’s best-read articles and commentaries, which continue to attract many readers. A journalist and activist based in Yaoundé, Cameroon, he was a co-founder of the Cameroonian Foundation for AIDS. He was murdered in July 2013, apparently because of his advocacy of LGBT rights.