Ugandan Anti-Homosexuality Bill Could Return
May 16, 2011
Unfortunately, we haven't seen the last of the reviled Ugandan anti-gay bill that would mandate the death penalty for some homosexual acts.
Following an international outcry, Uganda's parliament ended its eighth session on Friday without passing the bill. But the ninth session starts this week -- and David Bahati, the bill's author, has pledged to reintroduce the legislation.
Activists on the ground are celebrating the recent win -- but gearing up for the next fight. "We are well armed for it," said Kikonyogo Kivumbi, the executive director of the Uganda Health and Science Press Association in Kampala, a network of individuals working to promote minority health rights and end homophobia.
(A big thanks to those who signed the petition via the Update.)
The legislation, first introduced in 2009, would issue a death sentence for homosexuals living with HIV and in the case of same-sex rape. "Serial offenders" would also face capital punishment. The legislation not only violates international law, but undermines public health initiatives by discouraging full disclosure of sexual activity. Any person who "aids, abets, counsels or procures another to engage of acts of homosexuality" -- this would include health professionals who offer safe-sex advice -- could face seven years in prison.
Read more from the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission.
This article was provided by Housing Works. It is a part of the publication Housing Works AIDS Issues Update. Visit Housing Works' website to find out more about their activities, publications and services.
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