St James Municipal Corporation to challenge gay pride ruling

Mayor of Montego Bay Homer Davis.

The St James Municipal Corporation says it will appeal the decision of the Supreme Court on Monday to grant an interim order that allowed Montego Bay Pride to rent facilities at the Montego Bay Cultural Centre.

Mayor of Montego Bay, Homer Davis, who chairs the St James Municipal Corporation, told reporters that the Corporation will appeal the court decision.

The Corporation had withdrawn approval for the event that had been scheduled for October 13, after learning that the topic to be discussed was, Is Jamaica ready for same-sex marriage?

But the Supreme Court granted an interim order late Monday for the event to go ahead while also granting leave for the gay rights group, Montego Bay Pride, to seek judicial review of the corporation’s decision.

Gay rights activist Maurice Tomlinson.

Montego Bay Pride, which says it was created to allow marginalized and abused members of Jamaica’s LGBT communities feel like they have a place in the country, filed the lawsuit against the Mayor and the St. James Municipal Corporation after they banned the organisation from using the cultural centre.

The case was brought by Montego Bay Pride’s founder and Development Coordinator, Maurice Tomlinson, an attorney, gay rights activist, educator and a senior policy analyst with the Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network. He is being represented by lawyers from Jamaicans for Justice (JFJ).