Jamaican LGBTI rights activist / attorney Maurice Tomlinson explains here some of the background of his legal challenge against Jamaica’s anti-sodomy law. Court action on that challenge is scheduled for tomorrow (Tuesday).
Why I fight the Jamaican anti-sodomy law
On March 19, 2012, I (AGAIN) reported an email death threat that I had received as a result of my activism for the rights of LGBTI Jamaicans. The police officer taking my report advised that it would be only a matter of days before they could tell me the source of the threat, which I had used their computer to download. After many follow-up calls and emails the police did nothing about the threats, or gave me any updates.
Nearly four years have passed and I can only assume that the reason that they failed to act was because they considered me an unapprehended criminal.
When I had first reported the threat a year before, the recording officer stated that he hates gays and they (WE) make him sick. When the matter was reported to an Assistant Commissioner of Police he stated that such attitudes were unfortunate but that they would not change until the law was changed.
Since then, I have not gone back to the police with notice of my other death threats. I do not think anything will happen, not until the anti-sodomy law is repealed.
I am therefore fighting for my own safety, and that of ALL LGBTI Jamaicans. We must be able to count on our police to protect us.
- I refuse to be a victim, so I took a stand, Tomlinson says (Dec. 21, 2015, 76crimes.com)
- Toronto lawyer challenges Jamaica’s anti-homosexuality law (with video) (Feb. 21, 2016, CBC News)
- Jamaica’s top daily endorses suit against ‘buggery law (Dec. 11, 2015, 76crimes.com)
- Jamaican activist sues to overturn ‘buggery law’ (Dec. 8, 2015, 76crimes.com)
- Jamaican activist ends challenge to anti-sodomy law (August 2014, 76crimes.com)
- Fear for family safety dissolves lawsuit vs. anti-gay law (August 2014, 76crimes.com)
- Jamaican PM reneges on promised review of sodomy law (April 2014, 76crimes.com)
- Two more gay men killed in Jamaica; panel seeks probe (July 2012, 76crimes.com)