DR. ARUN KASHYAP // Statement on the Murder of Dwayne JonesJul 22, 2013
The United Nations in Jamaica condemns the brutal murder of 17-year-old Dwayne Jones by patrons gathered at a dance party in St. James in the early hours of 22 July 2013. Dwayne was reportedly chased and attacked by a crowd of assailants after it became known that he was male and dressed in women’s clothing.
We welcome the statement issued by the Minister of Justice, Senator Mark Golding, denouncing the killing and calling on the police to spare no effort in bringing the perpetrators to justice. The Government should ensure that the investigation proceeds without delay and is conducted in an independent and thorough manner. Those responsible for this heinous crime must be held to account for their actions.
Dwayne Jones is, sadly, only the latest in a long line of individuals in Jamaica assaulted and killed apparently because of their sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.
Tolerance, acceptance of diversity and respect for others are all underpinnings of any free and equal society. They are also essential for everyone to enjoy their human rights on an equal footing. The need to ensure human rights for all and to respect the principles of non-discrimination, including for people belonging to sexual minorities has been consistently underscored by the United Nations Secretary General. The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has launched the Free & Equal campaign designed to raise awareness of homophobic violence and discrimination, and promote greater respect for the rights of for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) equality.
Further information on the Free & Equal campaign, in addition to a wide range of advocacy and educational materials can be found and shared via the campaign website (www.unfe.org).