LGBT rights in Montserrat

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LGBT rights in Montserrat
Same-sex sexual activity legal? Legal since 2000
Gender identity/expression -
Military service UK responsible for defence
Discrimination protections Yes, sexual orientation only
Family rights
Recognition of

Same-sex sexual activity is legal in Montserrat since 2000.[1]

Law regarding same-sex sexual activity[edit]

Before 2000, anal sex was a criminal offence. However, sexual acts between two consenting adult males in private were expressly decriminalised by an Order in Council in Montserrat (and other British Caribbean territories) by the British Government pursuant to the Caribbean Territories (Criminal Law) Order, 2000 Sections 3(1) and 3(7).[2] According to section 4 of the order, the law was passed retrospectively. There are two exceptions to the law: group sex, or sex in public, remains a criminal offence and may also lead to a charge under gross indecency and other minor sexual offence laws.[3]

As a British overseas territory, Montserrat is required to comply with its obligations under the international human rights instruments which have been extended to them. Specifically this includes an adherence to the European Convention on Human Rights which highlights a responsibility to ensure non-discrimination.[4]

Recognition of same-sex relationships[edit]

Same-sex marriage in Montserrat is not legal. Article 10(1) of the Constitution reads:

Notwithstanding anything in section 16, every man and woman of marriageable age (as determined by or under any law) has the right to marry a person of the opposite sex and to found a family.[5]

Discrimination protections[edit]

The article 16 of the Constitution and the article 79 of the Labour Code bans discrimination based on sexual orientation.[5][6]

Summary table[edit]

Same-sex sexual activity legal Yes (Since 2000)
Equal age of consent Yes (Since 2000)
Anti-discrimination laws in employment Yes (Since 2010)
Anti-discrimination laws in the provision of goods and services Yes (Since 2010)
Anti-discrimination laws in all other areas (incl. indirect discrimination, hate speech) Yes (Since 2010)
Same-sex marriages No
Recognition of same-sex couples No
Step-child adoption by same-sex couples No
Joint adoption by same-sex couples No
Gays and lesbians allowed to serve openly in the military Yes UK responsible for defence
Right to change legal gender No
Access to IVF for lesbians No
Commercial surrogacy for gay male couples No
MSMs allowed to donate blood No

See also[edit]