Sixteen days to put violence against women on the activist agenda in Jamaica

Today (November 26) is International Day Against Violence Against Women, which begins the Sixteen Days of Activism. As always, this issue will be high on the agenda among human rights activists across the island. Violence against women haunts us. In August, I wrote about the case of a young woman whose body has never been … More Sixteen days to put violence against women on the activist agenda in Jamaica

Jamaicans for Justice condemns the murders of two policemen

Human rights groups are not popular in Jamaica. Many Jamaicans do not seem to understand what the philosophy behind their work is, and wrongly ascribe motives to them that are very far from the truth. Our leaders frequently make snide remarks about them, especially when they are talking to a supportive audience, perhaps the party … More Jamaicans for Justice condemns the murders of two policemen

Gender-based violence and the young Jamaican woman

I wrote recently about the Caribbean Observatory on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights, based in Antigua. According to their CEO, the group “continues to work with partners, CSOs, state entities to critically address the linkages between gender-based violence (GBV) and SRHR with the aim of transforming the environment, including the engagement of men and … More Gender-based violence and the young Jamaican woman

Partnering for women’s advocacy in Guyana under the Spotlight Initiative

Progress continues, steadily and surely, on issues relating to sexual and reproductive rights, gender equality (my thoughts from 2020 here) and gender-based violence in the Caribbean (in addition to LGBT rights, to a much more limited extent perhaps). It may seem rather patchy, here and there, but sometimes small battles, as well as the large … More Partnering for women’s advocacy in Guyana under the Spotlight Initiative

Caribbean Observatory calls for repeal of discriminatory laws infringing LGBTQ+ rights

The Caribbean Observatory on Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights is an accredited member of the Caribbean Family Planning Affiliation and the International Planned Parenthood Federation. It is a civil society-led initiative to conduct social monitoring and track progress towards the advancement of integrated  SRHR and gender-based violence (GBV) in the region while advocating for improved … More Caribbean Observatory calls for repeal of discriminatory laws infringing LGBTQ+ rights

Human rights in Jamaica and beyond – past and present

It’s International Human Rights Day, and it’s not just a hashtag. A lot has been going through my mind today. These are stormy times, with the wind blowing first one way and then the other. A sudden rogue wave appears and nearly knocks you off your feet. 2021 has been strangely – and perhaps surprisingly … More Human rights in Jamaica and beyond – past and present

World AIDS Day in Jamaica: lighting a candle after 30 years

As I wait for the virtual Annual Candlelight Vigil to emerge from Zoom-land, I indulge in some memories. If I was to use that well worn cliché, I would call them “bittersweet.” For several years during the 1990s, I attended these vigils on the front lawn of what was then the headquarters of Jamaica AIDS … More World AIDS Day in Jamaica: lighting a candle after 30 years

Celebrating 76 years, the UN focuses on frontline heroes and partnerships

I have been thinking a lot about peace recently, and my thoughts will be in a follow-up post – including the critical role that our young people can and will play. I particularly like the United Nations’ alliterative theme for UN Day this year – all those “P”s! In Jamaica, as almost everywhere else, climate … More Celebrating 76 years, the UN focuses on frontline heroes and partnerships

Jamaican gender activist Linnette Vassell tells older women: “Step out of fear”

I have a mental gathering of “Jamaicans I admire” in my head. They never cease to inspire me. They are young, and older, and in between, and in all walks of life. Linnette Vassell is one. This quiet afternoon – the first in three days of COVID-19 lockdown – I listened to a short interview … More Jamaican gender activist Linnette Vassell tells older women: “Step out of fear”

The Community Paralegal Programme: supporting Jamaican victims of violence

The discussion about gender-based violence continues in the Jamaican media; in fact, it never really goes away. But very often, those who suffer are not aware that help is available. The Community Paralegal (CP) programme is there to help. It is delivered by the non-governmental organization Stand Up For Jamaica, with grant funding from the … More The Community Paralegal Programme: supporting Jamaican victims of violence