Jamaica's anti-gay law is up for parliamentary review

Mark Golding, Jamaica's minister of justice
Mark Golding, Jamaica’s minister of justice

Jamaican legislators likely will review the nation’s anti-gay law as part of a legally required examination of laws related to sexual offenses.
“There is a provision for reviewing the Sexual Offences Act every five years, and the Act was promulgated in 2009,” Justice Minister Sen. Mark Golding said, as quoted in the anti-gay Jamaica Observer.
Golding said the review was not a covert attempt at changing Jamaica’s  anti-sodomy law, but he acknowledged that a review of that colonial-era law, known as the Buggery Law, would likely be included.
A likely focus of the review will be the law’s effect on public health programs, including the battle against HIV/AIDS, because as the Observer stated, “the buggery provisions … are considered by some groups to be hampering efforts to deal effectively with these diseases.” In fact, that opinion is widely shared by anti-AIDS experts, although perhaps the Observer and definitely conservative Christian leaders wish it weren’t.
For more information, see the full Jamaica Observer article: “Buggery could dominate review of sex laws.”

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Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, Erasing 76 Crimes. Contact him at [email protected]

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