Annual Report: Jamaica 2013

May 23, 2013

Annual Report: Jamaica 2013

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Violence against women and girls

Sexual violence against women and girls remained a concern. On 27 September, following a meeting with several government and civil society representatives, the Office of the Prime Minister promised a plan of action to address violence against women.

In July, the CEDAW Committee recommended, among other things, strengthening the capacity of the Bureau of Women's Affairs, collecting and compiling comprehensive data on violence against women, and strengthening victim assistance and support programmes.

Rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex people

LGBTI organizations reported an increase in attacks, harassment and threats. Many such attacks were not fully and promptly investigated.

During the electoral campaign in December 2011, Portia Simpson Miller stated that no one should be discriminated against because of their sexual orientation. However, once elected, the government took no steps to remove discriminatory laws.

A second petition was filed with the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights challenging articles in the Offences Against the Person Act (commonly known as the “buggery” law) on the grounds that they are unconstitutional and promote homophobia.

Death penalty

No death sentences were handed down. There were seven people on death row at the end of the year.

Amnesty International visits/reports

  • Jamaica: One more year without justice (AMR 38/002/2012)
  • Jamaica must tackle shocking wave of police killings (PRE01/123/2012)