Friday, July 1, 2011

Thank You Note

Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG)
P.O. Box 70208, Clock Tower,
Kampala, Uganda
Telephone: +256 312 294 859

To All Comrades

Sexual Minorities of Uganda (SMUG) would like to extend its sincerest gratitude for your support and encouragement in combating the Anti-Homosexuality Bill. Due to your hard work and dedication, the Ugandan
Parliament ended without the passing of the Bill, allowing the LGBT community of Uganda to take one step closer towards freedom. Had the Bill passed, every homosexual within Uganda would have been subject to the death penalty for practicing gay sex with people under 18, with disabled persons, when the accused party is HIV-positive or for those previously convicted of homosexuality-related offences. David Bahati’s desires to “kill every last gay” would have been far from impossible. Thankfully the 8th Parliament closed without the passing of this legislation, and while SMUG was hard at work advocating against this bill, the conclusion reached would not have been possible without the domestic and international support given by all of you.

As SMUG persists in its work to free the LGBT community in Uganda, we request that you continue to support our work and the lives of those who daily live within the fear that state sponsored homophobia creates. The threat of the Bill being proposed again remains on the minds of all those who advocated against it. Even without the threat of the Bill being redrafted, there is work to be done to change the hearts and minds of Ugandan society and rid Uganda of current laws that allow for the arrest and imprisonment of up to 14 years for homosexuals. Combating the homophobia within Ugandan society becomes even more important as we remember the death of our beloved friend and fellow advocate, David Kato, who was brutally murdered in his
home simply because of his steadfast commitment to the rights of the LGBTI community. These atrocities and the threat of future legislation that would further criminalize homosexuality can only be stopped by continuing to advocate for the recognition of equality for all, regardless of sexual orientation or gender interpretation. Your continued support of our organization, other human rights groups, and all sexual minorities within Uganda is extremely appreciated. it is our hope that one day, all those in Uganda, across Africa, and around the world will not live in fear because of who they love.

SMUG also welcomes the recent UN Resolution on Human Rights, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity which identifies the need for investigating the discrimination and violence that affects the LGBT community around the globe. Because of this important step made by the international community, David Bahati can no longer support his homophobia through the absence of sexual orientation and gender identity within the international legal system.

We continue to stand with you for justice and equality for all.

In Solidarity

Sexual Minorities of Uganda

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