Human rights defender
Vincent is a human rights defenders from Kenya who is working on LGBTI rights. Vincent is currently working as the Program Officer Policy and Advocacy at PEMA Kenya, an LGBTI-led organization that works to advance social inclusion and protect human rights for the gender and sexual minorities. PEMA is focusing on the topics of access to health services, social and economic empowerment, demanding inclusivity and institutional capacity and advocacy. As Policy and Advocacy Progam Officer Vincent is identifying, prioritizing and analysing the issues that affect the day to day life of LGBTI persons. He also traffics the implementation of policies at various levels (community, county and national). In the course of his work Vincent has engaged in media interviews, research, community mobilizations, sensitization of community members and has intervened with the police in cases of arrests. PEMA Kenya has worked with organizations including COC Netherlands, Hivos and the Open Society Foundation.
Human rights violations in Kenya
At present, Kenya is at a crossroad. On the one hand LGBTI organizations have become more visible and are increasingly recognized by state institutions. On the other hand, there is a rising tension within the government and public domain on issues around LGBTI. According to the report released by GALCK. The LGBTI community continues to face direct acts of violence, social stigmatization and isolation, undetected metal health problems and poverty . This is understood from a growing number of cases of violence, and human rights violations that are reported by LBQ women and transgender persons to representative organisations. Kenya’s legal environment is characterized by the penal code that criminalize “carnal knowledge against the order of nature,” which is widely understood to refer to anal intercourse between men. The LGBT movement is currently in court to challenge the provisions of the Penal Code to be decriminalized /
Threats and harassment
Vincent´s colleagues, community members and Vincent himself have faced a myriad of human rights violations. Vincent has faced harassment from the police, his church, community members and from his own family members. The threats that Vincent has encountered range from email hacking and eviction to online defamation. He has also been arrested arbitrarily and framed for loitering will ill intention.