UK government to co-chair LGBT rights coalition

| 11/12/2018 | 74 Comments
Cayman News Service

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon at the UN

(CNS): The governments of Britain and Argentina have been chosen to co-chair the Equal Rights Coalition, an international body created to protect the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people around the world. Lord Ahmad, who is the UK’s minister for human rights, said Britain will use its role to lobby countries to decriminalise same-sex relationships, improve protection for LGBT communities and remove legislation and policies that discriminate against them. But he is also the minister for the UK’s overseas territories, many of which are still discriminating against LGBT people.

“It is a modern tragedy that there are people in same-sex relationships around the world who are discriminated against, tortured and deprived of the right to live their lives as they see fit,” said Lord Ahmad during the announcement about the co-chair role, which starts next June and will last for two years.

“Britain will defend human rights, stand up for our values, and fly in the face of the ignorance that criminalises, subjugates and discriminates against the LGBT community,” he said, adding, “I will make sure that Britain will not rest until LGBT people are afforded the same rights as everyone else.”

However, Lord Ahmad is responsible for the British Overseas Territories, many of which do not have the legislation that the FCO minister has pledged to address, including the Cayman Islands. And although he has said he will be pursuing equality, the British government has persistently stated that it will not impose marriage equality on its territories.

As a result, one same-sex couple here in Cayman are currently pursuing a legal challenge in the courts after they were refused a wedding licence earlier this year. Chantelle Day, a Caymanian, and Vickie Bodden, a British national, have filed both a judicial review and a human rights challenge as they fight to get married here in Cayman, where they want to settle and bring up their daughter.

Despite the comments by Lord Ahmad, gay Caymanian couples or couples with one Caymanian partner, as in the case of Bodden and Day, have fewer rights when it comes to formalising their relationships than couples who are legally married elsewhere and are here on work permits. While Day and Bodden could have married in the UK, where they both lived for several years, that marriage would not have been legally recognised in Cayman simply because Day is Caymanian.

With Britain now co-chairing the ERC, which Lord Ahmad announced on the 70th anniversary of the UN Declaration of Human Rights, it will become increasingly difficult for Britain to maintain its arms-length position in its own territories regarding marriage equality.

In his first press conference following his arrival in Cayman in October, Governor Martyn Roper said he would not intervene to prevent the Cayman Islands Government from fighting the legal challenge filed by Day and Bodden. Despite signalling his clear support for LGBT equality, he told CNS that this legal challenge was a matter that the local court should be allowed to decide and it was a case of wait and see what the results of this case are.

The intergovernmental Equal Rights Coalition is dedicated to the protection of the rights of LGBTI people. It was launched in July 2016, under the leadership of Uruguay and the Netherlands at the Global LGBTI Human Rights Conference in Montevideo. The ERC advances the human rights of LGBTI people and promotes inclusive development in both member and non-member countries. With 40 member states, the ERC advances its agenda by engaging with civil society organisations and multilateral agencies.

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Comments (74)

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  1. Unison says:

    Commenter @ 8:38

    I hope I give you a bit of understanding on the matter of Natural Rights and “gay rights.” Because they are not the same.

    You mention about Muslims and Christians. Ok then … consider this. I hope you understand: If a Muslim is born a Muslim, then wouldn’t it make sense by legislation, you enforce on EVERYONE that they respect their rights???

    But you say, they are not born Muslim … so [common sense], you are not going to expect EVERYONE to abide by laws respecting socalled “rights” the Muslims are demanding from everyone to keep.

    Chew on that logic for bit before you start saying people who are not born gay should have their “gay rights” enforced on the populace.


    • Anonymous says:

      Unison, give some thought to what if anything is being imposed on absolutely anyone else by recognizing same-sex marriage.

      Whether or not a Muslim is born Muslim, we respect that person’s right to practice their faith under the law. That doesn’t mean we impose Muslim laws or religious rights on anyone else, or force anyone else to be Muslim.

      Similarly, by respecting a same-sex couple’s right to have their union recognized under the law, that doesn’t mean we impose homosexuality on anyone else.

      The only thing that’s required is that the government give equal recognition to same-sex couples under the law as they do to opposite-sex couples, just like the law must respect the practice of the Muslim faith equal to Christian faith.

      Chew on that. I know logic can be hard.

  2. Caymanian cowboy says:

    All of this controversy over some god no one can prove exist.

    • Anonymous says:

      And you’re a Caymanian? You must have been one of those who raised with a silver or gold spoon in your mouth! Any real Caymanian know that there is a Someone higher than himself! smh ?

      • Anonymous says:


      • Charles Darwin says:

        Religion is not a requirement to be Caymanian. Our constitution allows one to legally be an atheist, which I am. I am 7+ generations deep, born and raised here.

        I grew up in the church, but left when I became an adult and the hypocrisy and bigotry became evident to me after I got an education. Evolution is not a theory, it is a proven concept which you should do some research on.

        You think ‘real’ Caymanians are christian because most of us are indoctrinated into it from birth. Some of us are able to wake up and realize that ‘hell’ is just a way to keep you from questioning the validity of talking snakes and man living in a fish for days, and so that you continue to give your money.

        • Anonymous says:

          It is called the theory of evolution for a very good reason.

          CNS: “Theory” in the sense of “scientific theory” doesn’t mean what you think it means. I’ve found this explanation for you. Evolution is fact.

          • Anonymous says:

            No evolution is not fact. The fact is that evolution is part of your belief system.

          • Anonymous says:

            How did all the blue iguanas make it from Mt Ararat to Cayman and Cayman alone after they left the ark? Why don’t you crash through the firmament when flying to Miami? (On the second if you are going all literalist on us re Genesis, you need to defend the firmament too).

            • Anonymous says:

              Perhaps you should study the art of debate with cogent arguments and not introduce elements irrelevant to the discussion.

          • Unison says:

            It is a theory stringed by factual findings. Naturalism is a theory that the idea or belief that only natural (as opposed to supernatural) principles and forces operate in the universe. From it stems the Evolutionary Theory. Merriam-Websters dictionary: it is “a theory that the various types of animals and plants have their origin in other preexisting types and that the distinguishable differences are due to modifications in successive generations…”

            I think your trying really hard to persuade the commenters of your site that this naturalistic idea is the only source by which all various types of plants and animals derive from.

            Its appears, you are more or less, shying away from calling it a theory to support your Atheistic views.

            Good Luck

          • Anonymous says:

            I beg to differ, since theories offer evidence, not proof. The theory of evolution is controversial and academics are very divided on it. It is neither proven or disproven. Much like the existence of a supreme being. While we have accepted certain theories like that of Newton’s gravity a very famous scientist named Einstein disputes the Newtonian definition of gravity being large masses attracting smaller masses. Evolution is not fact, it is a collection of evidence to which various interpretations have led to much dispute.

        • Anonymous101 says:

          You grew up in church and left … well, you need to grow more, darwin boy. People have diverse beliefs, and you need to respect that. Not borrow science internet junk. That just makes you look very narrow minded.

          Grow more.

    • Anonymous says:

      Or not exist

    • Anonymous says:

      Does the wind exist?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Equality for all. Enough said.

    • Caymanian1 says:

      Properly define what is Equality.? Thats what you gay people fail to do!

      • Anonymous says:

        I’m not gay. I’m for equal rights. It’s not hard to grasp if you actually wanted to but I’m sure you don’t.

      • Anonymous says:

        Equality under the law in this case means permitting two adults who wish to enter into a legal union to enjoy the same benefits and burdens of that union under the law, regardless of whether those two adults are of the same or a different sex. Let me know if you need more clarity.

  4. Anonymous says:

    “it is fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Almighty God”. I pray that we will see the error of your ways before it is too late>

  5. Anonymous says:

    Who cares if a few people want to be gay? Yes it goes against nature and doesn’t allow kids to be born. Should we disallow marriages between straights who refuse to have kids? Should we also prevent women from cutting their tubes and vasectomies for men? We aren’t going to go extinct.

    Morality is irrelevant – the gays aren’t hurting anyone. We’re talking ONE ADULT loving another ADULT. What’s wrong with love and peace??

    No, it won’t devalue your marriage.

    No, allowing gay people to have civil unions won’t turn you or your kids gay.

    No, trying to prevent the unions from being legal doesn’t hide the concept of homosexuality from kids these days who have access to anything on the internet. Nor will it be taught in school.

    No, no one is forcing you to do anything or change anything about your life. Letting them have their unions today would not affect your life in any negative way, be real. If so, do tell.

    • Anonymous says:

      Many starving people in the GLOBE …how abt there right to live?

      Global leaders are failing – when was lgbt right such a global catastrophic issue? Since they wanted to push the agenda on all. Its truly sad times for 2018 humanity.

    • Unison says:

      Well, alot of valid points mentioned. But if you agree with science that people are not born gay, and “gay rights” are solely subjective. Then it shouldn’t be hard to see the LGBTIQ as a RELIGION. And hence under the Freedom of Religion, be allowed to have their own marriages just like Muslims and Christians do in a democratic society – without revamping our Childrens and Family Laws, and imposing “a version” of marriage recognition on everyone.

      Ask yourself the question – Why are the LGBTIQ organization so hell bent at enforcing “gay laws” on everyone irrespective of their belief-systems? This can’t be democratic.

      A version of marriage should be a PRIVATIZE affair. Not one version PUSHED DOWN everybody’s throat to accept! And I can’t see why giving people the freedom to make their own contractual partnerships with legal benefit rights (civil unions) would suffice them!

      But it seems, despite sound reasoning and taking these alternatives of calling themselves a religion and respecting the use of contractual partnerships, we see the LGBTIQ pursuing a global leftist agenda. They are pushing it worldwide and on the OTs, and money is their fuel.


      • Anon says:

        So Uni, trying to understand, you oppose Same-Sex Marriage law because in your words its a leftist agenda? I disagree with your view. I think traditional marriage should be stay and remain as the highest marriage. This is to protect the moral decline of our society.

        • Anonymous says:

          I agree with you. When you see your neighbor dying with aids then you realize that it is not right. Give them a job and they cant even push a wheel barrow. Sin is sin and there is no justification for it. I cant take the ones who are hiding in the churches. Most disgusting.

        • Unison says:

          Yes, I understand your concerns. I think so too that traditional marriage is primary.

          But I believe Gd works even better in a democratic environment of free speech and libertarian governmental values.

          I believe if your morality is so ordained by Gd, then you don’t need the help of the state or government to protect or preserve its influence. The moral decline of society is really from a lack of education (spiritual truth) and people choosing to follow after their desires with no thought for others.

          What I am saying – Government should not make any law respecting a version of marriage just like they shouldn’t make any law respecting a religious faith. Leave that for the people to decide. The LGBTIQ camp will have their version of marriage in peace, and without them enforcing the recognition of everyone including children. I would privitize all versions of marriage. And enforce the respect of civil partnership. Thats for gay couples to have entitlements guaranteed to them that traditional marriage couples do have.

          Now … will such freedom, open a pandoras box of immorality and cause the decline of society? I think that is left with people’s choice – the way Gd made it to be before there was ever a UK/ Cayman government.

          If the government ENFORCES LGBTIQ policies on the populace, why yes, by all means, I think all should oppose it for the sake of liberty!


      • 1337h4x0r says:

        “enforcing gay laws on everyone”

        Unison, I stopped reading right there. What laws to be enforced onto you?

        You can continue to despise people who eat meat if you’re vegetarian, just don’t go and take their plate of bbq chicken and dump it.

        Likewise, continue to disagree with the gay lifestyle, but who are you to tell two grown adults what they can do in their bedroom / private lives?

        Who are you to claim to be the victim of someone’s agenda when you force yours, which is promoting unequal rights to anyone who isn’t straight?

        Born that way or not, we should allow them to live in peace instead of hating our own people for loving another human.

      • Anonymous says:

        So much stupid on one comment
        Approaching critical mass the black hole of stupid will soon form

      • Anonymous says:

        Being gay is a religion now..? LOL what a nut this guy is.

    • Anonymous says:

      Totally agree with not caring about a few gays, so let’s not waste more time on caring about their so called rights. Let us spend our time caring for children who don’t have enough to eat, women who are denied education, terrorism, fighting cancers, building a mental health facility etc etc. The gays will be just fine, they are here already and I don’t care what they do or how they live, but there are much higher priorities.

      • Anonymous says:

        so why not give them equality instead of fighting against it, so we can all move on to more pressing matters? if you really cared about education, terrorism, fighting cancers, and mental health, you would spend your time working to fix those things instead of writing comments that work to suppress people instead of offering them equality under the law.

  6. Sound Frank says:

    I do like the irony that the minister charged with upholding human (and especially LGBTI) rights is also the OT minister. Made me chuckle.

  7. Anonymous says:

    This is not the UK, so this is not news. If they were ever going to impose marriage equality, they would have done it already.

  8. Hombre says:

    Anon 8:13am only embarrassment around here is you wid your male Funkiness!

  9. Straight People Justice Movement says:

    I hope LOrd Ahmad will protect the people and children of Yemen from being bombed to death or are their lives and suffering less important than the LGBT community. Alast they neither have the money nor affluence to protect their human rights! We appear to have two kinds of morality side by side one which we preach but do not practice an another which we practice but seldom preach Eh Lord Ahmad ???

  10. Anonymous says:

    what a bunch of dreamers…

  11. BeaumontZodecloun says:

    “I will make sure that Britain will not rest until LGBT people are afforded the same rights as everyone else,” said Lord Ahmad.

    Good. It’s about time. I hope those that object, recognise that they are opposing equality.

    • Anonymous says:

      You people are toying with fire. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Living God. He may not be real to you now in your atheistic faith, and you may live in determined ignorance which is your right, but there will be dire consequences. Do not say you were not warned. Eternity is a long time. A shockingly long time. In fact, I plead with you to reconsider. No one is going to get any pleasure from seeing a precious soul in such an horrific predicament.

      • BeaumontZodecloun says:

        You make a lot of false assumptions with your religious fervor. First, I just represent me, not any people. Second, I am not an atheist, but worship the same God as you who made us all. Third, my wife and me promote LEGAL equality, as is guaranteed under our Constitution. You see, there are many heterosexual couples that also believe in equal rights for all.

        You propose to control some undefined morality in which you sit in judgement, and that is fine, as long as that judgement is only pointed at yourself. I am wholly uninterested in your opinions of damnation for those who live differently than you; what I am interested in is your reasoning for wanting to apply the law — as it is written — in an unequal manner. Equality means just that. Same law, same enforcement for all.

        • Jus Sayin says:

          I have to ask. I don’t mean to be rude, but how far will you extend equality?

          There are many things that can not be equal and for good reasons.

          • Anonymous says:

            What’s the good reason here??

          • BeaumontZodecloun says:

            There are no degrees of equality under the law.

            Certainly there are facets of life which are not equal; I am talking about legal equality. All laws we live under should apply equally to everyone for whom they govern.

  12. Cayman Born1 says:

    Cns: “Lord Ahmad, who is the UK’s minister for human rights, said Britain will use its role to lobby countries to … remove legislation and policies that discriminate against them.”

    In other words, folks, through their definition of discrimination and MONEY, they will buy our politicians. That is what lobbying is all about. And you know our politicians here … like they will stand up for morals … yeah right ?

  13. Anonymous says:

    What a wretched time to be alive…

    • Anonymous says:

      Really? Go live in Leviticus times then, you wouldn’t last a day.

    • anonymous says:

      Personally I think living during slavery would have been a worse time to be alive

      • Brad says:

        Yep. You are born with skin color. But the most ignorant commenters I’ve seen on this site, are those saying you are born gay ?

        I just hope new generation open their eyes and not compare this gay movement to what black people had to go through 300 years under the hands of white slavemasters!

        • Anonymous says:

          A voice of sanity in the morass of political correctness. Well said, Brad.
          I watched 12 Years A Slave recently and felt so sad at what many black folks had to go through. There is no comparison between the two.

        • Anonymous says:

          I fail to see why being born gay is relevant to whether we should protect gay people’s equality under the law. You are not born Christian or Muslim, and yet we protect each person’s freedom to practice their religion under our Constitution. You are not born PPM or CDP, and yet we protect each person’s right to associate with the political party, and vote for the candidate, of their choosing. You are not born speaking your mind, and yet we protect your right to express yourself free from government intervention. You are not born owning property, and yet we protect property owner’s rights to peaceful enjoyment.

      • Anonymous says:

        I take it you don’t “employ” a “helper” then?

  14. Anonymous says:

    It is becoming an embarrassment to be caymanian.

    • Anonymous says:

      I am surprised by your choice of the present continuous.

    • Anonymous says:

      It is definitely an embarrassment to have such a large portion of my population to be completely indoctrinated into a fairytale that grants them this “holier than thou” mentality.

      Such a mentality makes them shout that they’re the victim, when they cause the few gay fellow Caymanians to be “discriminated against, tortured and deprived of the right to live their lives as they see fit.” Simply because they don’t agree with it..?

      Banning alcohol and cannabis did not stop it from being consumed. Adults do what they want. Trying to ban and shun gays won’t stop people from being gay. It’s a part of life some people need to accept instead of closing their eyes, talking to themselves in a dark room, and thinking the magical ghost will someday “cure” our gay Caymanians. Should we not be “loving our neighbors” as you like to preach?

      Someone commented this analogy and it forever stuck with me:

      A vegetarian adult who prevents their family from eating chicken has no right to tell me, a grown adult, that I can’t eat chicken.

      • Woman of Faith says:

        Why do you pit this between gays and the Most High?! You should know better. Many people can just see by nature that the lifestyle is wrong. And on top of that, you are going to forcefully impose gay laws for the whole country to recognize!

        What if I don’t want to recognize your version of marriage? Nor, allow my child to be educated by your teachers?

        • Anonymous says:

          Still, 99% percent of the homophobic bigots are the extremist believers in the Sky Fairy and his magic stories.

          • Anonymous says:

            The way some of you always bring redicule towards the one and only Holy God shows clearly that all of you supporting the gay lifestyle knows thst it is against the word of God. You are trying to diminish the existence and power of God by making fun with your “sky fairy” comments but you know deep down in your core that greater than you have tried this before to no avail. Everyone was created equal but some chose the alternate. Do not blame God and Christians for your mistakes. God is waiting patiently to forgive all who have sinned, but you have to make the commitment. Christians are praying for your souls. At the final day each of us, including you will bow and acknowledge God as the Most High., don’t be one crying out for the rocks to fall on you to hide you from the wrath to come.

          • Anonymous says:

            Interesting, yet you think rainbows are always magically coming out of your @$$? Please stop the bigotry against Christians.

          • Anonymous says:

            You might want to show believers a little respect by not name calling, then perhaps you might have a case to present.

        • Anonymous says:

          Answer: You will be fined or punish for DISCRIMINATION. You will be ostricized as a hater and bigotted person.

          • Anonymous says:

            And you will probably be ostracized as an illiterate bully.

            • Observer :| says:

              Now why is this person a bully? I don’t get it. If you are gay and you find what is being said is not true, why not present your facts?

              • Anonymous says:

                To disagree with gay anything does not make one a hater. Why force others to think like you? Live and let live. I do not agree with the gay agenda and that is my opinion. You may be for it and that is your opinion.
                But when you force your corrupt view on me, then you are a bully.

        • Anonymous says:

          There’s nothing stopping your child being taught by a gay teacher. Whether he or she is allowed to marry has nothing to do with that.

        • Anonymous says:

          You personally don’t need to recognize anything if same-sex marriage is recognized. Rather, the government does. Nothing is being imposed on anyone, because our Constitution protects us against undue discrimination by the government, not by private persons.

          If you do not want your child educated by gay teachers, you have the freedom to home school them or to move to a place, if it exists, where there are no gay teachers.

          • Lawyer says:

            Your a naive cookie to think its not going to impact people’s lives

            • Anonymous says:

              You’re absolutely right. It will positively impact gay people’s lives, because they will stop having to suffer from undue discrimination under the law.

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