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Call for greater inclusion in Caribbean societies

May 17th, 2022

There is a call for greater inclusion among Caribbean societies as the world observes International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia.

Caribbean Campaign Lead of Open for Business, Donnya ‘Zi’ Piggott, stressed that “there’s a strong correlation between economic growth and inclusion,” in a message to mark the occasion.

That full message follows:

On this International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia (IDAHOT) human rights must remain at the centre of our fight for justice for LGBT+ people who through laws and our legal system continue to be criminalised and ignored. It’s morally unjust for a group of our population to be consistently made invisible by our governments.

Globally however, there’s a strong correlation between economic growth and inclusion – the Caribbean is no exception. LGBT+ Inclusive societies fare far better than ones that marginalise and exclude segments of the population. According to the Open for Business Caribbean Report on LGBT+ Inclusion, when people are meaningfully included, stronger economic outcomes flow.

This goes for people living with disabilities, women, youth and LGBT+ people.

Today on May 17th IDAHOT, we are reminded about the additional social and economic fall out when people are disproportionately excluded from the workplace, the home, from our communities and from society at large. Young talented LGBT+ people continue to leave our shores for large metropolitan cities, creating a talent vacuum in our countries.

Open for Business has conducted 2 years of research and has found that the Caribbean stands to gain an additional $3.9BUSD from retaining our talent, increased LGBT+ tourism, increased foreign direct investment, increased productivity and reducing our spend on social services.

So, should we work to reform harmful laws, protect people from discrimination and make a concerted effort to bring everyone equally to the table? We would only reap the benefits of stronger and more cohesive communities and more prosperous societies.

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