Police trained to respect gays, uphold human rights  

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The first in a series of workshops to educate Police officers on how to treat with citizens and visitors of sexual minority groups concluded on Wednesday morning at the Police Training Academy.

A sexual minority is a group whose sexual practices and adapted orientation differ from that of the surrounding society. They include persons who are gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender.

The workshop was hosted by the Society against Sexual Orientation Discrimination (SASOD) in collaboration with the Guyana Police Force.

At the closing of the training, SASOD and its partners addressed the public and media on the importance and potential of the initiative.

Joel Simpson, Managing Director of SASOD (left) and other officials at the training

Joel Simpson Managing Director of SASOD said, “the initiative to train our officers was inspired by the recent Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) decision to de-criminalize cross-dressing on November 13th 2018 by striking down the law and declaring it unconstitutional.”

Simpson said it is important to sensitize local Police of the fact that there has been a regional shift in understanding sexual minorities and policies governing their human rights.

Deputy Police Commissioner Paul Williams

Deputy Police Commissioner Paul Williams also spoke at the event and commended SASOD for their efforts.

He said there are already existing guidelines and manuals to guide policemen and women on issues of gender-based violence and sexual orientation.

The Deputy Commissioner suggested that there is a sustained sensitization programme so as to eliminate excuses by officers who “will be sanctioned if they violate the human rights of sexual minorities.”

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