The Caribbean region is home to some of the most oppressive anti-gay laws in the world. Its history as a British colony has left it with a legacy of stigma and discrimination that lingers even after the countries achieved independence. This legacy creates an environment where LGBTQ+ people are persecuted, threatened, and sometimes forced to leave their home countries to seek asylum elsewhere.
Legal and constitutional reforms are desperately needed in order to safeguard the health and wellbeing of LGBTQ+ people across the Caribbean. So, too, is attitudinal change, including from certain institutions and influential leaders who continue to spread stigma and discrimination. The Legal Network, via our Caribbean expert and in collaboration with our in-country partners, is actively working to challenge these discriminatory laws and make the region safe for all.
And change is happening. Recent challenges to laws that criminalize LGBTQ+ people have been overturned in Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, and St. Kitts and Nevis. Promising court challenges are also proceeding in Jamaica and Dominica, and we need your support to maintain this momentum.
As we build on these victories and work toward important upcoming court dates, support for our Caribbean work is crucial. And it is even more important as we see hostile laws and polices considered in other parts of the world, as countries attempt to deny human rights for LGBTQ+ communities.
The HIV Legal Network’s Caribbean Can Rainbow Fund provides an opportunity for you to assist with the costs of ongoing legal challenges and to support initiatives to change hearts and minds. Our Caribbean partners are pushing toward victory and you can help us get there.
The HIV Legal Network promotes the human rights of people living with HIV or AIDS and other populations disproportionately affected by HIV and criminalization, in Canada and internationally. In 2021, we undertook a planning process that would shape the strategic goals and priorities for the organization’s next five years (2022-2027). To do this, we sought … Read more
In 2021, the HIV Legal Network undertook a planning process that would shape the strategic goals and priorities for the organization’s next five years (2022-2027). To do this, we sought the input of a broad range of stakeholders, from partner organizations to people living with and affected by HIV and criminalization, to staff. All identified … Read more
Submission to the Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity
In response to the call for input from the Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity (to inform his presentation to the 50th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council), the HIV Legal Network makes this submission regarding human rights violations against LGBTQ+ people in the … Read more
Respect. Protect. Fulfill. You can help challenge wrongs, advance rights, and transform lives. Denied basic healthcare. Criminalized and vilified for love. Unfairly targeted by police. These abuses, and more, are too often the experience of people living with HIV and of communities affected by HIV. At the HIV Legal Network, our mission has always been … Read more
In November 2020, the HIV Legal Network hosted Intimate Conviction 2: Continuing the Decriminalization Dialogue conference online, inviting more than 30 expert speakers to share their knowledge and experience with laws criminalizing same-sex intimacy. We are now very pleased to share the edited volume of presentations from this conference. Here you will find personal stories of … Read more
For more than eight years, Maurice Tomlinson and the HIV Legal Network have been in court fighting for rights that are denied to LGBTQ+ people living in Jamaica due to colonial-era laws that criminalize same-sex intimacy. Through this slow process, Maurice’s case has nonetheless been gaining momentum, and in recent years we have seen similar … Read more
STATEMENT: DOMINICA TO HEAR CONSTITUTIONAL CHALLENGE ON LGBT RIGHTS For immediate release – The following can be attributed to Minority Rights Dominica (MiRiDom) and the HIV Legal Network. September 28, 2022 — Today, in a critical step forward for human rights, the High Court of Justice in Dominica will hear a constitutional challenge from a … Read more
LGBTQ RIGHTS AND THE CHURCH: Intimate Conviction 2 Volume Launches in Jamaica Laws Criminalizing Consensual Same-Sex Intimacy Still Exist in More Than 60 Countries Worldwide For immediate release March 7, 2022 — Kingston, Jamaica — On Wednesday, March 9, 2022, the launch of the Intimate Conviction 2: Continuing the Decriminalization Dialogue volume will be held in … Read more
LGBTQ RIGHTS AND THE CHURCH: Intimate Conviction 2 Volume Launches in Barbados Laws Criminalizing Consensual Same-Sex Intimacy Still Exist in More Than 60 Countries Worldwide For immediate release March 3, 2022 — Bridgetown, Barbados — On Monday, March 7, 2022, the launch of the Intimate Conviction 2: Continuing the Decriminalization Dialogue volume will be held in … Read more
BREAKING: AIDS-Free World and HIV Legal Network Release Delayed IACHR Report Inter-American Commission on Human Rights Censures Jamaica for Violating the Rights of LGBTI Citizens, Recommends Repeal of Homophobic Law Criminalizing Consensual Sex FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE February 17, 2021—In response to the first-ever petition filed in this matter, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights … Read more