Coalition for Vulnerable Communities Applauds Section 53 Ruling

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Updated: August 11, 2016

Belize made history yesterday when Section 53 of the Constitution was ordered to be amended by the Chief Justice, Kenneth Benjamin.  The amendment will see Section 53 not applying to consenting sexual acts between adults of the same gender as opposed to the penalty of ten years in prison for persons engaging in carnal intercourse against the order of nature.  The Caribbean Vulnerable Communities Coalition is an organization that works for Caribbean populations that are most vulnerable to HIV infection or that have been forgotten or neglected along the way when it comes to healthcare programs.  Dr Carolyn Gomes is that organization’s director who has told a Caribbean newspaper that she welcomes the ruling of the Belize Supreme Court regarding Section 53 and she believes that it will have positive implications for gay men in Belize and in the wider region.  Dr Gomes went on to say, quote, “we hope that this is the beginning of the overturning of these archaic colonially imposed laws which as the judgement says, do damage to the dignity, rights and freedom of expression of the gay community around the region and all others.” End of quote.