Thursday, 12th October 2023,  Initiative for Equality and Non Discrimination (INEND) launched a bench book drawing on years of research, activism, and legal advocacy. The bench book is a guide for judicial officers and other key players in the justice system. The aim is to deepen the judicial system's understanding of the issues affecting LGBTQ+ individuals in Kenya, drawing insights from interpretations by both Kenyan courts and those in diverse jurisdictions.
For more than two years now, INEND has actively engaged judges and magistrates in Kenya, enlightening them about their crucial role in safeguarding and ensuring the fullest realization of fundamental rights and freedoms for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, and queer (LGBTQ+) community in the country.
This bench book stands as a significant resource, striving to seamlessly integrate LGBTQ+ and human rights considerations into the judicial framework. Recognizing the importance of protecting minority rights in Kenya
Public Secretary of the Kenya Magistrate and Judges Association (KMJA) and High Court Judge Edward Muriithi graced the occasion and underscored the pivotal role of the bench book as a crucial initial step for judges and magistrates to grapple with the complexities of LGBTQ+ rights aligning with the judicial mandate to advance, advocate, and safeguard the rights of minority groups.
The bench book, beyond its role in guiding judicial officers, serves as a point of reference for the LGBTIQ+ community and their allies  on the current status of various human rights aspects in Kenya. Given the common-law jurisdiction, courts are guided by precedents set by other courts of similar or higher authority.
The legal resource guide not only offers insights into best practices from Kenyan courts but also draws from experiences in other countries, providing a comprehensive perspective for judicial officers. INEND Executive Director Esther Adhiambo expressed confidence in the bench book as an effective educational tool for judicial officers, emphasizing the ongoing need for education to foster understanding, diversity acceptance, and the eradication of discrimination.
Legal practitioners, human rights activists, feminist organizers and persons of goodwill can download the INEND bench book as a valuable resource on legal issues affecting the LGBTQ+ community in Kenya.
 Download HERE

About The Author

Maureen Kasuku

Maureen is our resident cat lady and Beyoncé stan. She writes about spas, brunch and ballet recitals but has never been to any. Moonlights as a social justice activist in her spare time. She knows things and is obnoxiously opinionated on the internet but not in real life

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