Trinidad and Tobago: Prime Minister to give ‘due consideration’ to LGBT discrimination

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The Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago has gone on record to say that she will give “due consideration” to the issue of discrimination raised by LGBT people.

A new gender equality policy is expected to be brought forward by the Prime Minister, who has said she doesn’t condone discrimination, which could suggest that she is to include LGBT discrimination in the policy.

Kamla Persad-Bissessar, the first female Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, gave her personal opinion on the matter of discrimination, reported Guardian Media, Trinidad. She wrote a letter to the head of a British based NGO, which read:

“I do not support discrimination in any form against any individual, regardless of their gender identity and sexual orientation.”

Despite this being her personal opinion, critics have speculated that having a Prime Minister strongly opposed to such discrimination will positively effect cabinet discussions going forward.

It is expected, therefore, that the policy which is brought forward for public discussion, may include measures to tackle LGBT discrimination.

The policy has already been examined, revised and discussed by a cabinet-appointed committee, which included representative of NGOs and government agencies, as well as a wider range of civil-society groups. The latter included trade unions, faith-groups, youth groups, the media and businesses.

It will soon be up for public discussion, which is expected to be contentious.

Earlier in December, a gay rights activist from Jamaica said he was planning to sue Trinidad and Tobago because of a law that prevents gay people from setting foot on the twin island.

Maurice Tomlinson said he was to appeal Section 8 of Trinidad and Tobago’s Immigration Act, which declares that “homosexuals” are banned from entering Trinidad and Tobago, and also categorises gay relationships as immoral.