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Apr 24, 2017

UNIBAM Addresses Impact of Laws on “Marginalized Groups”

The United Belize Advocacy Movement kicked off a two-day session in Belize City to discuss legislation and how it affects marginalized groups. The focus of the conference is two-fold; to raise national knowledge of the application of international law on sexual orientation and gender identity as well as to raise national knowledge of Belize’s domestic law.  UNIBAM says that there are many gaps that exclude sections of the population and that laws, as they stand today, do not cover all citizens. We spoke with front man Caleb Orozco who explains why it is necessary to have this discussion.


Caleb Orozco

Caleb Orozco, Executive Director, UNIBAM

“When we look at our issues from a social perspective, we don’t only see legislative oppression, we see systemic marginalization. Systemic Marginalization occurs because citizens are silent or do not wish to fight the system. And so you find many stories, especially in the education system where young people are thrown out time and time again for all the wrong reasons.  When we look at the perspective we look at the issue of benefits. Social Security forces gay and lesbian people to pay into the system, but it does not afford the same equal application of benefits to those in common-law union. When we look at the issue of pension, the system does not afford the same treatment of couples in terms of the transfer of benefits. When we look at the issue of estate planning the same occurs.  You don’t perpetuate poverty or marginalization or vulnerability by saying because your moral position on an issue then justifies you destroying the quality or eroding the quality of life of a young person or fellow citizens. If we are in a country asking for equity for citizens, then fair is fair across this country. So, today then is just one part of that process awareness that we are all connected and vulnerable as citizens.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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