Remarks by the Delegation of the United States of America
UPR Working Group Intervention for Saint Lucia, 10th Session
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
The United States welcomes His Excellency, Ambassador St. Aimee and the Saint Lucian delegation to the UPR Working Group and congratulates Saint Lucia on the completion of its national report and presentation today. After carefully reviewing the content of the report and following the presentation today, we would like to offer the following comment.
The United States commends Saint Lucia for its commitment to protecting human rights despite the country’s vulnerability to natural disasters and the damaging effects of the global recession. We look forward to further cooperation with Saint Lucia to strengthen human rights in the country and throughout the region.
We note that Saint Lucia has addressed discrimination based on sexual orientation in its national report. We remain concerned about the continued criminalization of homosexual conduct and the pervasive societal discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) persons. The criminalization of homosexual conduct exacerbates homophobic attitudes in the general population and prevents LGBT persons from fully participating in society and taking advantage of opportunities afforded to all other Saint Lucians.
Bearing in mind these concerns, the United States would like to make the following two recommendations:
1. We urge Saint Lucia to decriminalize homosexual conduct by reforming the penal code so that for the purposes of prosecution, gross indecency would not apply to private acts between consenting adults.
2. We urge Saint Lucia to condemn acts of violence and human rights violations committed against persons because of their sexual orientation or gender identity and to ensure adequate protection for those human rights defenders who work on the rights of LGBT persons.