As of Thursday April 12th, the High Court of Trinidad and Tobago have deemed the sections of the country’s Sexual Offences Act as unconstitutional, thus starting the process to decriminalize homosexuality.
According to Newsday, a Trinidad and Tobago outlet, the law has not yet been thrown out completely. It will undergo further processes in July between the state and gay rights activist Jason Jones, who is spearheading this legal battle.
Good morning Trinidad and Tobago 🇹🇹 My journey for the last few years all begins and ends this morning. I wish to thank all of you for your kindness and support! Let’s go make history! 🌈❤️🇹🇹🏳️🌈
— Jason Jones (@trinijayjay) April 12, 2018
In March 2017, Jones filed a lawsuit against the government of Trinidad and Tobago in order to strike down this colonial-era law, which specifically prohibits anal sex. Although the law is rarely enforced, the culture around LGBTQ people is pretty hostile in the country, including a recent incident with a gay Trinidadian fleeing the country after being attacked.
The United States had similar laws until 2003 when the Supreme Court ruled that anti-sodomy laws were unconstitutional in the famous case, Lawrence v. Texas.
This is a great sign for Trinidad and Tobago and hopefully sets a new precedent for the rest of the Caribbean.