Posted: Friday, October 30, 2020. 2:51 pm CST.
By BBN Staff: A group of activism organizations representing the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community held a virtual meeting with People’s United Party (PUP) Leader John Briceño this week, to discuss the party’s stance on issues affecting their community.
The group which comprised of Belize Trans Colors (BTC), Belize Youth Empowerment for Change (BYEC), Empower Yourself Belize Movement (EYBM), Promoting Empowerment Through Awareness for Les/Bi Women (PETAL), Our Circle (OC), Trans In Action Belize (TIABelize), United Belize Advocacy Movement (UniBAM), spoke with Briceño on Thursday.
Topics of discussion during the meeting included crime and violence towards LGBT community members and their families; the Equal Opportunities Bill and the need for legislative reform to allow for community members and their families to enjoy the various protections and benefits that are currently being withheld.
Briceño was quoted as saying, “We are a progressive party. We are an inclusive party. We are all Belizeans, we are all created equally in the eyes of God and we need to do everything possible to embrace everyone. We may not agree with everything being presented by the LGBT community; however, we assure you that we will be moving forward to address the issues. These are real issues and you all are taxpayers and equal just like every one of us.”
Media contact for the group, Derricia Castillo (Managing Director of Our Circle), explained that the meeting forms a part of the groups’ “Vote with Pride” campaign launched last week. Castillo said that the group aims to dialogue with the major political entities and third parties, to learn what LGBT rights would look like with the country under their leadership.
“My honest feeling about the meeting is that there is hope for the People’s United Party actually advancing Human Rights issues on a whole, not just LGBT issues,” Castillo said. “From here what we are going to do is a comparison of all the party leaders we were able to engage with.”
Castillo noted that the group met with Belize People’s Front (BPF) Leader Nancy Marin today, spoke with Belize Progressive Party (BPP) Leader Patrick Rogers who is trying to schedule a meeting for next week and has not received any acknowledgment for their attempts to meet with United Democratic Party (UDP) Leader Elect Patrick Faber.
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