July 6, 2020

A Summary of Colours Cayman’s meeting with The Governor of the Cayman Islands, following the Court of Appeal’s ruling on same-sex marriage


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GRAND CAYMAN, , 18 November 2019:
On 13 November 2019, Billie Bryan, founder and president of Colours Cayman, and Dr Leonardo Raznovich, English Barrister—to whom our organisation has instructed in the past and who has assisted us, pro bono, in numerous matters before the EU and UK Government in London—met with the Governor of the Cayman Islands to discuss the Court of Appeal’s recent ruling on same-sex marriage. Following is a summary of our discussion.:

  1. Colours Cayman commented that we found the ruling to be shameful, in that the Court of Appeal has shirked its duty as guardian of the Constitution when it has been clearly breached by the Cayman Islands Government, leaving the LGBTQIA+ community of the Cayman Islands without an effective constitutional remedy.
  2. Colours Cayman also insisted that the term “expeditiously” in the Court of Appeal declaration should be understood to mean that the Cayman Islands Government must act swiftly and put a legal framework in place by the time Chantelle and Vicky must decide whether or not to appeal within 52 days from the date of the judgement—before the 29th of December.
  3. Colours Cayman also remarked that the term “expeditiously” applies to the Governor and the Secretary of State in London, including the Crown. Hence, if the Cayman Islands Government fails to comply by the 29th of December, then either the Governor or the Crown must do so by the 29th of December.
  4. Whether the Governor or the Crown decides to do so by using the powers under Section 81 of the Constitution or by Order in Council, Colours Cayman made it clear and formally requested that they must do so by extending same-sex marriage to the jurisdiction. Colours Cayman made the point that anything but same-sex marriage would be considered discriminatory and subject to JR before the HC in London.

Colours Cayman told the Governor that as a matter of good governance, it must not be overlooked that the Crown has extended same-sex marriage to the 4 constituting countries of the United Kingdom, the three Crown dependencies  and nine out of the 14 overseas territories.

Moreover, Colours Cayman also highlighted that the UK Parliament has recently extended same-sex marriage to Northern Ireland, and that the Foreign Affairs Select Committee of the House of Commons has previously advised the FCO in February to extend same-sex marriage to the five overseas territories of the Caribbean where there is no legal framework.

The Governor gave assurance that he is confident the Cayman Islands Government will legislate by the beginning of next year to which Colours Cayman reiterated that next year is too late given the points made previously.

Finally, regardless of any alliances our organisation has made during its formation, Colours Cayman would also like to state that as a collective, our members, volunteers and associates will continue to apply pressure both politically, legally and socially until marriage equality is achieved for all residents of the Cayman Islands.

About Colours Cayman

Colours Cayman is a locally operated non-profit that aims to foster a safe and comfortable social environment for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex and asexual (LGBTQIA+) community of the Cayman Islands by building a network of local businesses and public venues free of discrimination and harassment towards anyone on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity. We advocate for LGBTQIA+ rights as Human Rights and promote the inclusion and equality of LGBTQIA+ persons in the Cayman Islands and throughout the Caribbean and Latin America.

Billie “Bee” Bryan 
Founder & President
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