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Bishop says no to legalising prostitution, homosexuality

Bishop says no to legalising prostitution, homosexuality

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Bishop of the Windward Islands the Rt. Reverend C. Leopold Friday has spoken out against the call by Prime Minister of St. Kitts and Nevis Dr. Denzil Douglas for the decriminalization of prostitution and homosexuality.

Delivering the sermon at the 7 a.m. mass on Sunday, August 27 at St. Georges Cathedral in Kingstown, Bishop Friday declared that it was instructive that the call comes at a time when we are celebrating emancipation. According to the Bishop, prostitution is slavery and leaves the prostitute at the mercy of the pimp.

Dr. Douglas, the current Chairman of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) and the body’s lead spokesman on HIV/AIDS and other health issues, is of the view that unless Caribbean nations tackle the politically explosive and religious issue of decriminalizing such sex acts, the region wouldn’t win the battle against the spread of HIV/AIDS. {{more}}

And while he added that public opinion might be against it, Douglas, speaking in New York recently, said decriminalizing such acts would help bring infected gays and prostitutes from underground so that they could seek care and help lower the incidence of HIV infection.

Bishop Friday, head of the Anglican Church in St. Lucia, Grenada, Carriacou as well as St. Vincent and the Grenadines, disagrees and expressed that his research showed that countries that took this route report that decriminalizing encourages the growth of the sex trade and all accompanying businesses. He further said that it promotes human trafficking and slavery, and demeans and dehumanizes women and children.

The Bishop explained that sexual activity is understood by Christians to be an expression of love in the context of an enduring relationship, while decriminalization of such acts would reduce human sexuality to a commodity.

The Bishop made it clear that his view is not an attempt to turn a blind eye to the situation or to belittle the hard work of Prime Minister Douglas and others who work in the fight against the pandemic. He commended the Prime Minister for taking the lead, even though he does not support his position, and called for a “healthy debate” on the issue.

The church leader is of the view that the victims of prostitution and homosexuality primarily need help and support, improved access to health care and exit strategies. He called for laws to crack down on the pimps, traffickers and customers.

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