Trinidad and Tobago's Ban on Consensual Gay Intimacy is Overturned

White lighthouse with a red triangular roof overlooking beach surrounded by rich rainforest canopy

Trinidad and Tobago’s High Court has ruled that it is unlawful to criminalise same-sex intimacy between two consenting adults. 

Anal intercourse was previously punishable by up to twenty-five years in prison. Sexual intimacy – without intercourse – risked a sentence of five years.

This is fantastic news for the island’s gay community, but it also highlights the severity of homosexuality laws in a number of Britain’s previous colonies. That two gay men could face a twenty-five-year prison sentence for having a consensual sexual encounter is unbelievably draconian, and it’s Britain’s fault.  These laws are a hangover from a time when Britain treated homosexuals like criminals and told its colonies to do the same. 

This isn’t the first time this year that the British Government has had to face up to its LGBTQ legacy overseas.  Back in February, Bermuda became the first place in the world to repeal its same-sex marriage law.  Bermuda is a British Overseas Colony. 

Hopefully, Trinidad and Tobago’s new ruling will help inspire similar changes in other Commonwealth countries. 

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