Jamaica lesbians suffer from under-reported violence

Repeating Islands

Lesbians in Jamaica face attacks such as gang rape due to rife homophobia in the country, but few of these abuses get reported, Jamaica’s leading gay activist said, as Branka Juran and Maria Caspani reports in this article for TrustLaw.

“In Jamaican culture women are generally expected to be quiet about harassment and abuse,” Maurice Tomlinson, Jamaica’s leading gay activist and HIV/AIDS campaigner, said in an interview with TrustLaw.

Women are not the only victims. Tomlinson said 70 percent of attacks reported to rights organisations between 2009 and 2011 concerned gay men.

Under Jamaican law it is legal to punish any act of physical intimacy between men with jail and the possibility of 10-years hard labour.

Tomlinson was in London this week to receive the inaugural David Kato award for gay human rights activism.

“When we find out about these cases (involving gay women), they are usually so horrible that…

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