THE non-governmental organisation (NGO) RebuildTT has strongly condemned Caroni Central MP Dr Bhoe Tewarie’s public support for the LGBTQI community.
On Thursday, Tewarie told religious leaders at a forum he hosted in his constituency, to accept members of the community for who they are and to engage them in healthy, respectful and rational discussions about strengthening the family.
Head of CAISO Sex and Gender Justice, TT, Colin Robinson saluted Tewarie for the all-embracing comments and said it made them feel that they had a voice and that they mattered.
The Roman Catholic Church, which said it embraced people of all sexual orientation, also agreed with Tewarie that one could not discriminate against people because one did not have an understanding of their human rights.
President of RebuildTT, Gregory Lal Beharry, however, condemned Tewarie’s support. La Beharry said his organisation is dedicated to promoting family-first development in TT.
He said Tewarie’s advocacy for the religious leaders to engage members of the LGBTQI community in healthy, respectful and rational discussions about strengthening the family, was an oxymoron.
“The LBGTQI agenda is counter to the traditional family, and acceptance of the LBGTQI agenda will in fact undermine and destroy the traditional family. Any so-called rights afforded to this group takes away from traditional families.”
Underscoring that the group’s agenda was for acceptance of same-sex unions, Lal Beharry said this opened the door for non-traditional conventions.
“It calls for traditional families to be forced into accepting a school curriculum which tells them that same-sex couples are acceptable as a family. It opens the door to the adoption of children by same sex couples”
He used to support his argument, “A poll conducted by Nigel Henry’s Solution by Simulation last year which revealed that over 80 per cent of the population does not support this anti-family agenda. Politicians like Dr Tewarie should take note and not foolishly believe that aligning themselves to this movement will attract younger naive voters.”
Robinson had said the LBGTQI was a constituency that voted and would vote in the next local and general elections for parties based on what people said about them.
Viewing Tewarie’s statement as an “attack on the traditional family”, RebuildTT called on other religious leaders to speak out. Noting that other Opposition members, including Couva North MP Ramona Ramdial and Chaguanas West MP Ganga Singh have also expressed pro-LBGTQI views in the past, the NGO called on the leadership of the UNC “to declare its support for the traditional family, the best hope for a bright future.”
Robinson said the UNC 2015 manifesto advocated for the protection of people from discrimination based on sexual orientation.