(SNO) — With the government of Saint Lucia recently meeting with the Cannabis Movement, a group representing lesbians, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people on the island is hoping that it also will be able to get the ears of the government to discuss its issues.
United and Strong is the only LGBT group on the island and is celebrating 18 years of existence.
The group’s communication and advocacy officer, Bennet Charles, told Hot7 News that after the recent meeting with the Cannabis Movement, he hopes the government is eager to meet with them.
“We are happy to see that the government actually met earlier this week with the Rastafarian community discussing the issue of marijuana,” he remarked. “So we are hoping that the government is also eager to meet United and Strong to discuss the issue of LGBT and the anti-buggery laws that exist in Saint Lucia.”
He said the group hopes to meet with the prime minister in an agreeable and non-hostile environment.
“We want it to be a situation where we can sit down with the prime minister and and have a conversation,” Charles stated. “I think that brings out a way forward for the future of the LGBT community in Saint Lucia.”
He explained that United and Strong is very happy that it was invited by the government of Saint Lucia to participate in a human rights training initiative.
“We are trying to establish a human rights committee in Saint Lucia and I think the government is pushing that,” he noted. “So we are happy that is happening. We want to see the stance by the government that actually shows that they are ready to look at the LGBT community and explore other human rights infringements that are happening in this country.”
United and Strong is celebrating its 18th year anniversary under the theme “One Community, Many Voices.”
Activities include a press conference on Monday, a ‘Do you dare campaign’ which focuses on human rights and a 21-episode human rights radio drama series.