SJB platform dominated by equity, health
A civil rights campaign group has unveiled its platform for 2020.
Social Justice Bermuda, inspired by the global Black Lives Matter movement, listed a series of changes it wanted in the areas of criminal justice, education, healthcare and food and economic equity.
The group emphasised it has no political affiliation and was motivated by “the way that communities around the world are standing together to tackle and dismantle oppressive systems of injustice and racism”.
The platform highlighted the need for mental health support and voting rights for prisoners, better access to mental health court and the introduction of revenge pornography laws.
It also recommended that non-violent cannabis convictions should be wiped from the slate and that people imprisoned for that type of convictions should be released.
The SJB platform also called for strict quality control for cannabis and that the fee for personal cultivation licences in Cannabis Reform Bill should be cut to help the country's low-income earners.
SJB said it backed the Ministry of Education's Plan 2022, but would like to see a bigger emphasis on the health of pupils and staff, including improved mental health support and mandatory sex education in middle schools and senior schools.
Its platform also asked for the inclusion of environmental, gender equality and race history lessons in the school curriculum and recommended that Bermuda College should become a four-year university-style institution.
SJB also called for reparations for slavery and for pay differences to be tackled with a revised Workforce Equity Act.
The group said there should be a shift to a progressive tax structure and establishment of a living minimum wage.
SJB added there should be a partnership between the Government and the public to grow food for free consumption and that grocery stores should take more responsibility for the provision of affordable healthy products.
It said nutritional education should be strengthened.
SJB was formed in May and has led several campaigns, including Reject Rizzuto, which launched a petition against the appointment of Lee Rizzuto Jr as the United States Consul to Bermuda.
It also waded in on the cannabis legalisation debate, which included a formal response to the Government's Cannabis Reform Bill.