Gareth Henry is a gay rights and social justice activist who was born in Jamaica on October 20, 1977. Henry entered high school when he was only 10-years-old. It was during these years that he discovered his homosexuality. However, at that time homosexuality was extremely frowned upon in public society so he did not come out right away. Although there are more people in Jamaica being open about it today. The general opinion of public society has changed become any better. In fact, it may be worse today than in the 70s.
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Gareth Henry finally became brave enough to come out about it when he was 16. After graduating high school he attended Excelsior Community College and the University of the West Indies, earning a B.S. in Social Work, followed by an M.A. in Communications for Social and Behavioural Change. In 1997 he began doing volunteer work for the human rights organization, Jamaica AIDS Support for Life. In 1998 he also began volunteering with the new organization Jamaica Forum for Lesbians, All-Sexuals, and Gays (J-Flag). After its co-founder and spokesman, Brian Williamson was killed on June 9, 2004, Henry was the only one brave enough to take up the mantle of leadership.
In the following years on three separate occasions, Gareth Henry was beaten by the police. The last on February 14, 2007 was the most infamous and became international news. Sadly, it did not and in 2008 Gareth Henry was forced to seek asylum in Canada. He still resides here taking his message to the international community in hopes of instigating change in his homeland. He is also a professional badminton player and won lots of medal local and international competition.
Find more about Gareth Henry: https://www.olympic.org/gareth-henry