LGBT+ group ‘disgusted’ by legal aid grant

| 08/09/2020 | 77 Comments
Cayman News Service

(CNS): Colours Cayman, the first non-profit organisation in the country to represent the LGBT+ community, has said its members were “disgusted” that government has granted legal aid to a member of a conservative Christian association challenging the implementation of the Civil Partnerships Law by Governor Martyn Roper. The LGBT+ group said the action is doomed to failure and “any review of the governor’s actions would be futile and a waste of the public’s money”.

The governor gave his assent to the CP law on Friday because the Legislative Assembly failed to pass the bill in July. However, a legal aid application to challenge this action has been granted to Kattina Anglin.

“Ultimately, we’re disgusted by the Cayman Islands Government’s decision to financially assist an effort that has no hope of gaining any ground,” Colours stated, noting the numerous legal hurdles standing in the way of any legal challenges to the governor’s action.

MLA Ezzard Miller (NS) has also said that the challenge is futile. Speaking to CNS last week, he pointed out that section 31 of the Constitution very clearly and unequivocally prohibits any judicial inquiry of the governor’s decisions if they come directly from the UK government on behalf of the Queen.

Section 31(4) states: “Notwithstanding the jurisdiction of the courts in respect of functions exercised by the Governor, the question of whether or not the Governor has in any matter complied with any instructions addressed to him or her by or on behalf of Her Majesty shall not be inquired into in any court.”

Given that the governor was ordered to use his reserved powers to implement the law by the UK, no legal action could succeed, Miller noted.

Colours Cayman’s legal advisers also supported that view, adding that the Cayman Islands is a constitutional democracy with a codified written Constitution and not a parliamentary based democracy. “This means the Legislative Assembly and the premier have a legal duty to act in accordance with the Constitution, regardless of the will of the people who elect them,” Colours said in a statement.

When legislators voted down government’s bill for domestic partnerships that would have addressed the constitutional breach of human rights and fulfilled the appeal court’s direction, they triggered an unprecedented constitutional crisis. Therefore, the UK instructed the governor, under section 31(2) of the Constitution of the Cayman Islands, to use his reserved powers

“This instruction is not reviewable by any court,” Colours legal advisers said, in agreement with Miller.

The governor also acted under his constitutional duty to ensure that Cayman complies with the UK’s international obligation under the European Convention on Human Rights, especially considering that the legislators had stated publicly that they would not comply.

The Cayman Islands is not independent and the UK retains the constitutional ability to step in and secure good governance for the territories. The British government still has unlimited powers to legislate in the Cayman Islands as it deems fit, regardless of any diplomatic assurances about devolved responsibility that UK governors and overseas territory ministers have given over the years.

Miller also noted that the proposed package that Premier Alden McLaughlin and he had negotiated with the UK when Miller was opposition leader, which was all but agreed until this issue arose, had not only included the removal of section 81, which allows the UK to legislate directly for Cayman via the governor, but also parts of section 31 that bar judicial review of directly implemented laws.

However, the governor has already made clear that elements of that package, especially the removal of section 81, are now under review.


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Comments (77)

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  1. Rick says:

    I don’t know that your disgust is relevant or of any interest to people. But I find it pretty ironic that anyone in a group that is fighting for rights is disgusted by the rights of another.

  2. Anonymous says:

    How much is this costing us?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Hi CNS- (or anyone) How much assistance is she getting?Let’s remember, this all comes from our money that we pay in duty, work permit fees, etc. Lawyers fees can add up fast.

  4. JTB says:

    The question of whether same sex relationships are a human right is well settled and a challenge to that proposition is not deserving of legal aid.

    However – speaking as a lawyer – the limits of the Governor’s power to legislate under ss.31 and 81 of the constitution is an entirely proper question for the Courts to look into, and as such entirely appropriate for Legal Aid.

    • Jiggeh says:

      Let’s be real. Kattina could give a rat’s ass about his “limits”. All she wants is to fight gay people like her nephew who murdered my homosexual friend.

      For some reason the word “gay” ruffles church people feathers so Kat is using that for political momentum.

      • JTB says:

        Yes you’re right. But Kattina’s unworthy purpose doesn’t alter the fact that a JR of this issue would be objectively useful.

        Having the governor, civil service and legislature all apparently uncertain of the scope of this power is not a satisfactory situation for us to be in.

        • Anonymous says:

          Key word: apparently.

          Quite sure everyone is certain of it. Bill would have passed first go if some weren’t scared of losing their church wotes for supporting the bill.

  5. Anonymous says:

    I think by now we all expect the hateful opposition, we just don’t expect them to qualify for legal aid. That’s the disgusting part. Clearly there needs to be a higher merit threshold for legal aid, and screening of who’s dispensing it.

  6. Anonymous says:

    I don’t understand why everyone is surprised the UK intervened. THEY SAID THEY WOULD IF WE FAILED TO PASS THE BILL THE FIRST TIME. And we’re a territory, the UK can do whatever they want. We can’t have it both ways.

    • Anonymous says:

      I learned about gay sex at the age of 8 by being introduced to po*n by my best friend’s older brother. Left me very confused.

      Better to be taught it in a controlled, formal setting. You can lock down your kids and their devices but all it takes is one friend.

      Unless your child is gay, they won’t be gay no matter what you tell them. And if they are, shunning and trying to “cure” them of it will only make them not trust or like you.

      • Anonymous says:

        Better not to be taught at all. It has no business being in the curriculum. As you were confused when you were exposed. So will children, they are vulnerable and impressionable. They don’t need to be taught lgtbq ways in school. Furthermore, isn’t it always proclaimed that it isn’t a choice, you are born with these feelings? If you are born with these emotions then why do you need to teach impressionable children these ways?

        • Anonymous says:

          I was confused because he was using it to groom me as if it was ok. Thankfully got no where.

          Had I learned about it from someone I trusted or in a formal setting instead of watching gay po*n, I would not have been confused. I would have been aware of such alternate lifestyles and would’ve immediately knew what was up.

          Continue to stick your head in the sand and think that in 2020 your child won’t be around friends with internet-connected devices. Continue to Helicopter parent them so they grow up needing to hold your hand in a job interview.

          • Anonymous says:

            Do not act as if you know me or anything about me. Some could argue that being taught such a “curriculum” in school is grooming children in these ways as well. So your argument is null and void.

            As for my children, you know naught about how I raise them. We have a very close and open relationship, we discuss many things with one another. It is my responsibility to educate my child about life as well, not just the school system. My children do and will know about more about LGBTQ, we have friend and family who are members of this community as well. Many of whom have said that LGBTQ is not and should not be “taught” to young and impressionable children as it adds to confusion and leads to them questioning their identity. I stand with that, it is not the schools place to teach mine or anyone else’s child about sexuality etc.

            Maybe your parents should have been more forthcoming with you and had such discussions as I do with my children.

            • Anonymous says:

              See, that’s the problem. Thinking everything revolves around you and your kids, and that every family is and should be like yours.

              I said it before and I’ll have to repeat it: if you’re really born straight, no amount of exposure or learning about the LGBT will “convert” them.

              I get it, you’re a bigot and don’t want your kids thinking it’s ok to be gay if they really are. If that’s who they truly are, you simply want to suppress it as much as possible.

              • Anonymous says:

                11:43, Where did 8:59 say that everything should resolve around them or their family? That everyone should be like their family?

                Don’t twist things, it is not a good look. They are clearly saying it should be for families to teach their children about sexuality and things of this nature. Not have children exposed at a young age to things they are not yet able to understand properly understand. It is sad that you were exposed at a too young age and it affected you. I hope you have been able to get beyond that experience and be educated in a more appropriate manner as your life has progressed. However, it is ridiculous that you will sling terms such as “bigot” around because someone has a differing opinion on what should be introduced into the education system than you.

                The above comment stated that they have friends and family in the LGBTQ community. So how does that make them bigoted? They have had conversations where said people in the community have expressed their feelings that LGBTQ should not be taught in school. It should be encouraged to have open dialog on both sides as this opens the doors for peace and understanding.

                • Anonymous says:

                  “I raise my kids right so this isn’t needed else it might convince them it’s ok to be gay”.

                  Plain and simple. Don’t need to write 500 words back to refute.

              • Anonymous says:

                Wow, so you feel good calling people bigots because they disagree with you? This is why conversations between the LGBTQ community and the straight community cannot be had, because of ignorance and name calling. Having a difference of opinion does not make you a bigot or the devil. GROW UP. If anyone sounds salty, it it you. Furthermore, leave this persons children out of it. It is sick of you to be discussing the sexuality of kids you have no idea about. For all you know, that family could have a child who is gay. Nothing wrong with that. They obviously feel like such discussions should be had at home and/or with friends and family who can empathize and understand the experiences of those children.Instead of having a teacher who knows naught, attempt to “teach” them about LGBTQ etc.

                Maybe your family was not supportive and tried to “suppress it” as much as possible in you, but that is not everyone’s family. So stop trying to throw shade.

                • Anonymous says:

                  Not all parents have the balls or even care to have “the talk”, in fact mine didn’t. Stop thinking your perfect families represent everyone else. The only other place where some kids like me had someone to care for them and give them real advice was school.

                  FYI, I’m in a heterosexual marriage, but thanks for showing me exactly what sort of mentality I’m replying to.

                • Anonymous says:

                  big·ot
                  noun
                  a person who is intolerant toward those holding different opinions.

                  “They obviously feel like such discussions should be had at home and/or with friends and family”

                  Yes because Cayman is known to have 100% perfect families that would provide such support and no child goes neglected. Take unna head out of the sand.

    • Anonymous says:

      Hopefully

    • Anonymous says:

      You are the same type of person that opposed “straight” sex education in schools and were content to have 13 year old girls pregnant and praying that it would be all ok.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I’m all for marriage equality and I am happy that the DP bill is now law and I am very excited for any same sex couple who are about to tie the knot in this country (I wish it was marriage as opposed to civil unions but 1 step at a time I guess).

    Having said that, this thing of legal aid and judicial challenge doesn’t bother me that much. It’s not that much money and hopefully when Kattina loses, there will be one less way for so called religious people to try to interfere in other people’s romantic lives. I think this is something we have to go through as a country so that people who oppose civil unions will have exhausted all their options and money and will finally give up trying to change the law.

    • Anonymous says:

      8:12 am: as a Caymanian I am not only happy but I am delighted that the Governor intervened. He did so I n full compliance with our Constitution.

      Unlike you, I am really annoyed with this move by Kattina. It strikes me as a ploy following her admittedly interesting profile she managed to get the Compass to write on her.

      I agree it was a good story, but there was obviously a hidden agenda on her part. And by the way she is not the only person who grasped an opportunity for second chances and qualified in a field that should lead to success if she works hard.

      Unfortunately for her, this move will not catapult her to the top. Regardless of all the public interest and the legal opinion she managed to secure, the judicial review will fail her.

      Why? Because even if the finer points of the law she is relying on may have some legal merit in the confines of its narrow scope, in the context of the larger legal framework and in the spirit of the applicable law and conventions, it is a dead loss.

      So Kattina will get no political mileage out of this and will have to resort to hard work and years of experience like most people to make her mark.

      I commend to her: “Success is made up of little steps taken right now.”

      And no, I have no particular allegiance to Colours or any other group. Just coming down on the side of justice for all.

  8. Craig says:

    I am a gay man and I ❤️ Donald Trump. He is the coolest US President ever. Vote 1 Trump this November. The best pro-gay friendly president ever in US history.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I’m not in anyway defined as LGBTQ but I support the DPB and ultimately the Governor’s actions, in this case, because our elected body failed to implement an international requirement.

    As such, I do not support Ms. Anglin’s actions, nor especially, the fact that she will receive public funds to mount her objection. BUT I support her right to that opportunity, and I object to the personal criticism of her and her past!! BTW, I don’t know her personally.

    Under the right circumstances, anyone can change their lives and seemingly she has, which is commendable. Why does she have to be maligned now about her past, which has no relevance on the actions she is now taking against the DPB? She’s exercising her rights! Just saying.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Well the feeling is mutual because many in the broader community are “disgusted” by their actions too. Everyone has the right to be heard, not just the “minority”, if the lady wishes to oppose the decision then she has every right to do so. Colours Cayman does not make up the whole community. Everyone has a voice and a right to be heard. The same way they wanted to be, she does too. So those “disgusted members” need to sit down.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Why are people disgusted? It is her right right to file for a judicial review the subject matter is not relevant. The outcome may be predictable, but never-the-less her right.

    • Anonymous says:

      Because it’s driven by homophobia. The only reason, really. There are numerous other issues she could spend her time and resources on but the only one they are after is trying to deprive others of same rights they enjoy on the grounds of sexual orientation. A big lot of them only show up when someone says the word ‘gay’, this is when they raise from slumber.

    • Anonymous says:

      Section 31 prohibits the judicial review of Section 81. DP Law is itself the product of domestic legislator inaction on a judicial review from last year. Kattina is a convenient pawn in the religious right theater wasting more of our money in an attempt to delay implementation. The non-profit she claims to represent has no money to pursue or settle a case that can’t be brought in the first place. It this gets as far as discovery, I hope her computer, phone, and bank records are seized so we can see which politicians are actually behind this latest anti-gay attack. Enough!

  12. Anonymous says:

    Pretty hilarious we still have people fighting against equality in the name of religion.

    Too bad Kattina wasn’t born 70 years ago where her only rights would be the right to cook and clean Lmao

  13. Anonymous says:

    Section 31(4) puts Cayman amongst the likes of North Korea. The governor is not perfect and if nobody can challenge his decisions we should just call him Kim Jong-un.

  14. Greg says:

    Civil partnerships are implemented – please get over it! 📚📘📗📒

  15. Anonymous says:

    Her circumstances as a child was not her fault so as an adult she is perfectly capable and not to be judged. Just like the LGBTQ community does not want anyone to judge them why are they not more tolerant also? I support the partnership law but I also support this lady having her voice heard and not have every Johnny come lately telling us how to live in a new colonial era.

    • Anonymous says:

      YES! This comment is everything. I support equality and fairness 100% but it is disturbing to constantly see the one sidedness projected from the LGTBQ community. They want everyone to be tolerant and understanding yet a great many are not themselves. Everyone has a right to be heard. Their do not solely make up our community, all must be heard. Even those who may disagree, fair is fair.

    • Anonymous says:

      Don’t you understand that tolerance only works one way??

    • Anonymous says:

      So are you saying that neo-nazis deserve to be heard and afforded state aid also?

    • Anonymous says:

      I think Kattina should be applauded for turning her life around the way she has, instead of insulting her. She is a very brilliant ambitious person and and has every right to stand up for her beliefs. All of you gay supporters are out there trying to crucify those who do not agree with your comments but you obviously have a problem with her and her rights. Failure is when you fall and don’t try to get up., stand tall Kattina.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Religion makes people stupid and it gives them an excuse to be mean. Sad.

    • Anonymous says:

      And also appears to give non religious people the right to make hate comments against believers in an attempt to propogate his/her bigoted view

      • Anonymous says:

        8:39, yes! It is hilarious to see people like the above commenter spout off about hatred and bigoted behavior, when they themselves are projecting it.

  17. Anonymous says:

    Legal aid is said to only be granted if it is in the public interest. Many instances that come to public knowledge indicate discrimination or bad judgment, including the refusal of the first request for legal aid to protect the public right of ways.

    CNS can you explain exactly what is considered public interest ? Is the decision left up to one person?

    • Anonymous says:

      I think the public interest is in having this appeal dismissed by the courts. A little public funds to help strengthen the law will be a good thing.

  18. ELVIS says:

    Carry on regardless staring SID JAMES. and the crew.

  19. Anonymous says:

    The majority of Caymanians are also disgusted because the democratic process has been abrogated. It works both ways.

  20. Anonymous says:

    You can’t simultaneously welcome the provision of legal aid that funded the court actions that got the ladies to this point then decry it being advanced to someone who opposes it. If the action is doomed to fail, so be it. If we went on the basis of people thinking challenges were doomed to fail those brave ladies wouldn’t have got their action off the ground.

    • Anonymous says:

      This is not the case when you just get into an adventure and see what happens hoping for the best. Those brave ladies knew the ground they were standing. But this?

    • Anonymous says:

      The ladies did not receive any government legal aid! They were privately funded.

  21. Anonymous says:

    Sick of these people now. THE BILL WAS PASSED. GET. OVER. IT.

  22. Cherry Pickers says:

    So let’s get this straight.

    If the UK makes a decision then no one is allowed to question it, period.

    So all this mumbo jumbo about The Human Rights Law is just that too. Mumbo Jumbo.

    If we were to seriously look at the example being set by the UK then I invite all to see the below attached:

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2020/sep/08/government-admits-new-brexit-bill-will-break-international-law

    If the LAW is to be followed then IT MUST BE FOLLOWED COMPLETELY. NO CHERRY PICKING ALLOWED.

    If not the maybe the UK needs to stay out of others countries bussiness.

    • Anonymous says:

      Scotland is about to pack it up.

      Wow, the shrinking Empire!

      • Anonymous says:

        10.46 Aye. Wur gettin’ oot ae yon corrupt union wi the sassenachs. Aboot time tae ye ken. Haggis, tattie scone and a square sauasage roll fur ye! Wi ingins tae!

        • Anonymous says:

          Dae ye ken ye’ll be bankrupt wi’ the North Sea oil runnin’ oot and nae access tae the Barnett formula, Jimmy? Haud yer weesht ye great big tattie bogle ye!

          • Jotnar says:

            The Barnett formula is going to be worth what exactly when the UK’s finances collapse under the combined pressure of Brexit and Covid. Replacing dependence on English handouts from an ever shrinking pot with the PM focused on public expenditure in those constituencies that elect Tories with the opportunity to create an economy open to free trade with the EU doesn’t sound that daft to me.

            • Anonymous says:

              Jotnar, you may not be Scottish; I am. You are not taking into account the combined forces of the hard left wing “gurning” that we Scots have been good at for the last fifty years ( at least) and the impressive capacity of the SNP to eff things up. The EU appeals to us because we think “ it will gie us hand oots” not because we will be afforded the opportunity to create an economy open to free trade with it! Btw, most Scots have never heard of the Barnett formula and would swear blind they get nothing in the way of financial grants from England.

    • Anonymous says:

      7:20 pm
      I read the Brexit bill will break international-law, and wondered about our fiasco created by our stooges. The U.K. can bully us and throw us under the bus like they did the Chagos islanders. That’s mother country. The sooner we break ties and swim the better. They are only concerned about their people, not the Cayman Islands.
      When has any law been made for the natives? All are made against us. Wake up
      caymanians!

  23. Anonymous says:

    Many of us are disgusted!

  24. Judge Ye Not says:

    In a Compass article of 14 August, this woman said she had been pregnant by age 14 and spent 30 years of her life as a drug addict. One may therefore ask whether she is fit to be the arbiter of morality in this land, even if only self-ordained.

    And yes. I am being very harsh and judgemental. But so is she.

    It cuts both ways.

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