From left: SAFE Lefdl Treasurer Elie Touze, Secretary Ivan Puig Otero and President/SAFE SXM Secretary Laurent Drouin Le May, SAFE SXM President Lysanne Charles, and SAFE Lefdl member Rudolph Davis.
POND ISLAND–St. Maarten/St. Martin Alliance For Equality SAFE SXM and L’alliance en faveur de l’egalite SAFE Lefdl in collaboration with University of St. Martin (USM) will hold their fourth International Human Rights Day Lecture at the University in Room 202 on Monday at 7:00pm.
Two 15-minutes lectures will be delivered at the public event, one by Clara Reyes on the importance of being an ally and the other by Cassandra Richardson, who will examine the history of Human Rights Day, Women’s Rights and Sexual Orientation Rights. A question and answer session will be held after each presentation. Snacks and drinks will be served after the presentations.
SAFE SXM and SAFE Lefdl work towards the empowerment of lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender, queer, intersex, plus persons. The event will serve as the launch of the new French-side chapter and introduce team members.
SAFE SXM secretary/SAFE Lefdl president Laurent Drouin Le May said when SAFE SXM started in 2013 the intention was to cover both sides of the island and every effort has been made to ensure that. However, over the years the need to make more of a headway on the French side led to the need to form a French-side chapter.
“It is important to remember that once not so long ago the idea of rights for LGBTQI+ persons or publicly saying you were an ally to LGBTQI+ persons were no-nos. This year, we want to look at how far we have come, while still discussing how much further we have to go in the future,” SAFE SXM treasurer Nadjesca Gumbs said.
The Human Rights lecture started with Denise Vijber from Curaçao in 2014 discussing human rights in general and how they are linked to the recognition of rights for LGBTQI people. Next were Kenita Placide and Maria Fontenelle of United and Strong St. Lucia in 2015 discussing regional community building and the importance of local mobilising and efforts. Aruba Member of Parliament Desiree Croes at the lecture in 2015 discussed the Civil Union Bill and its approval in the parliament of her island.
Shifts in the board in 2017 and the impact of Hurricane Irma led to no lecture in 2017.
“We are back in 2018 and looking forward to the conversations that will come out of our two presenters Clara Reyes and Cassandra Richardson. We thank USM for the opportunity to partner with them once again,” said SAFE SXM President Lysanne Charles.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/83392-safe-to-hold-human-rights-lecture-monday