Even as the Outameni purchase furore following the use of National Housing Trust, NHT funds to do projects outside of its scope lingers in the minds of many Jamaicans here comes another report of another minister wanting to deep into the kitty of funds contributed by us and that many of us (while able to get a refund 7 years after the year contributed) may never get a house as the mortgages are out of this world.
Ethical questions also come to mind as is it right to use those surplus NHT funds as a feeding tree for government department failures for social services?
RJR carried this report following the finance debate in parliament:
This was revealed yesterday during the meeting of Parliament's Standing Finance Committee which examined the 2015/2016 Estimates of Expenditure. Local Government Minister Noel Arscott, announced plans for the rehabilitation of a building, which would be used as a transitional shelter in downtown Kingston, to cater to the increasing number of homeless persons in Jamaica.
Mr Arscott was responding to questions from Opposition Spokesman on Local Government, Desmond McKenzie.
He stated that there are more than 1400 homeless persons islandwide with the Corporate Area accounting for more than 600. A building has been identified for the possible shelter but funds are needed.
Drag queens were recently used as decoy to distract a motorist, who was then abducted and robbed by a group of gays in New Kingston, The Star understands.
The victim, a selector, is furious as he seeks justice to recover his personal belongings, while describing the level of support by the authorities as unsatisfactory.
The selector recalled that while making his way down Trafalgar Road, two persons dressed as women walked into the path of his car and began dancing. The dancers, he said, entered his car through the back doors, pointed something at his head and told him to drive.
“Dem tell mi fi drive down a one way and we drive to a secluded car park. Mi a try negotiate wid dem but dem have cutlass and ting. One tek up mi phone off the front seat,” he revealed.
He was relieved of his jewellery and cash, while having to beg the perpetrators not to take his car.
“After everything happen and mi go a di police post, it tek mi half hour fi get anybody, di police lock up inside a sleep. Then when mi get through, mi afi wait a next 30 minutes for a vehicle to come from Half-Way Tree to go and look for the robbers dem,” the selector said.
“The police know some of dem by name, when we were driving we saw one of dem and di police call him and him say him never rob me, but him get $500 from the robbery.”
The St Andrew Central police confirmed that the matter is under investigation’s. The police also revealed that prior to the selector incident, a British citizen was robbed by drag queens of a high-end cell phone and $100,000.
Hardly anyone can imagine being afraid of seeking urgently-needed healthcare for fear of being attacked or even killed. But that’s exactly what some people in Jamaica face every day.
Jermaine Burton, founder of the homeless, gay help and advocacy group The Colour Pink, remembers the day at Comprehensive Health Centre when she learned she was HIV-positive. Despite the grave news, her nurse warned her not to look upset when she left.
“I was crying,” said Burton, who identifies as a woman, and used to be homeless on the streets of Kingston. “[The nurse] said, ‘Don’t go out and cry, because, if you go out and cry, people are going to know you are HIV-positive’." Her life was at risk because she could be the next target target of Jamaica’s violent, deep-seated cultural prejudice against homosexuality. Since HIV/AIDS is associated with homosexuals in Jamaica those seeking treatment for HIV/AIDS aren’t safe. That’s because they risk assault and even death every time they leave a medical clinic.
While Jamaica's government offers treatment programs for citizens suffering from HIV/AIDS, many people in the LGBTQ community who are HIV-positive, or may be at risk, refuse to seek testing or treatment out of fear they will be killed over their sexual orientation.
This Kickstarter project is aptly named “Not a Fish” in defiance of this egregious and ongoing violation of basic human rights. The term 'fish' is a derogatory term for homosexual men in Jamaica among other insensitive labels these victims of society are slapped with every day. Carolyn Bick is seeking crowdfunding to complete a documentary about the struggles Jamaican MSMs (Men who have Sex with Men) and other Jamaicans along the LGBTQ spectrum face in obtaining proper health care safely and without retribution driven by primitive homophobia. She wants to document exactly what they go through when they try to get testing and treatment -- services available to everyone in the United States without a second thought for our personal safety.
This crowdfunding campaign ends on October 3, 2014.
The I am not a fish Kickstarter Page - http://kck.st/1tmZPOH
Peace and tolerance