The topic of homosexuality in Jamaica has long been a hot and divisive one amongst Jamaicans; particularly artistes, who have continuously affirmed strong stances against it. Another issue amongst gays has raised eyebrows in the local music industry once more.
In Kingston, a growing number of homosexual prostitutes have been offering their services to passers-by, particularly in and around the New Kingston area. Though that particular part of Kingston is notorious for prostitution, the growing number of male prostitutes has raised qualms amongst citizens and the Dancehall community.
One such member of that community is ex-Portmore Empire singer and Vybz Kartel protege, Gaza Slim, who insists these gay prostitutes should be moved off the streets immediately.
“They should get them off the street and get somewhere put them because to me, they don’t live anywhere. They should get them some counseling and put dem inna school and get them off the road,” she told the Jamaica STAR. “I, Gaza Slim do not support homosexuality, but at the end of the day we are all humans.”
She boils down this issue to poverty and the lack of legitimate business opportunities available to them.
“It looks tacky and its prostitution. Most of them are little homeless boys who live same place on the streets,” she said. “It happens everywhere, but we need to do something about it because it looks really bad, get them some trade because they are parentless and homeless.”
Alliance Next Generation artiste, Iyara also weighed in on the matter, saying gay prostitution greatly affects New Kingston business-wise, as it is one of the biggest industrial areas of the capital.
“That kind of livity need fi get rid of because mi neva born inna dat deh type a Jamaica. The place neva stay suh, so the authorities have to find a way to take that out of the youth dem eye,”he told the STAR. “New Kingston is a place where a lot of people go to clubs and so forth, so it’s just not right. They are always saying artiste fighting against them, suh how wi a avoid dem and dem naah avoid wi? Dem fi guh far up into the woods wid dem thing deh.”
Many other artistes refused to comment publicly on the issue, with some fearing that going on record could cost them future business opportunities.
In late January, police from the St. Andrew Central Division stated that New Kingston was rife with gay prostitution, saying the business and residential area were not being spared the wrath of homosexuals who were at times violent.