Jamaica: Support grows for LGBT youths living in sewers

Published: December 9, 2013

 The plight of homeless LGBT youths in Jamaica has become much more widely known recently, even as much remains to be done to help them.

Ousted from everywhere else they have tried to live — their parents’ homes, then abandoned buildings, then an open-air gully — the youths have sought shelter in the sewers of New Kingston, most recently in a drainage tunnel under Trafalgar Road. Police raided the site on Dec. 2, seizing and burning clothing and food they suspected was stolen.
Police released seven of the eight youths whom they had arrested on suspicion of robbery, the Jamaica Observer reported. No charges were filed against them.
As it turned out, the items that police destroyed included clothing and food donated by concerned citizens seeking to help the youths. The police decision to burn charitable donations provoked outrage, boosting the visibility of the effort to provide the youths with food, social services and a shelter, to be called Dwayne’s House.
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