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Group 1

Topic: "Discriminatory practices limit the potential of the Caribbean to facilitate development"
Discuss this statement with reference to discrimination in the Caribbean based on ethnicity and
sexual orientation.

Thesis Statement: The Caribbean has limit the potential to facilitate development by
discriminating against ethnicity and sexual orientation, depriving the country of well educated
and hard working individuals.

Discrimination is the treatment or consideration of a person or thing based on the group
or class.
Sexual orientation refers to one's mating preferences.
Discriminatory practices such as discrimination against ethnicity and sexual orientation
as hindered the development of the Caribbean by limiting the amount of educated and
hardworking individuals.
Development consists of three major aspects which are: economic development,
sustainable development and human development.
In some Caribbean countries, homosexuality in any form is against the law (Mintz, 2013).
Ethnic discrimination is also a major issue that we see every day which classifies
individuals based on the skin colour.

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The Trinbagonian criminal code condemns sexual interactions between two persons of
the same sex however the individuals must be caught in the act to be susceptible to
Individuals who are homosexual, bisexual and transgender are discriminated in the
workplace. An example of this is when asked whether or not gays would be allowed to
take up government positions, the Prime Minister of Jamaica empathetically said there
would be no such thing occurring in his cabinet. Also they wouldn't be able to function
and perform efficiently in the work environment since they are discriminated.
Hence well qualified and educated individuals are deprived of jobs, which indirectly
deprive the country of hard working and possibly efficient workers.
It also increases the unemployment rates and hence decreases the revenue gained from
income tax. Unemployment also leads to an increase in the level of crime in the country
which decreases the standard of living of a country.
Migration into the country will also decrease and migration out of the country will
increase due to the discrimination shown and the level of crime occurring.
The sexual orientation act of Trinidad also condemns the act of buggery. This is sexual
intercourse involving anal copulation by a male person with a male person or by a male
person with a female person. However these persons may be caught in the act to face
charges which range from eighty five years to life imprisonment.

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Society today is still affected by social stratification where ethnicity plays a big role.
The word ethnicity refers to an ethnic group or a social group that shares a common and
distinctive culture, religion and language.
Social stratification refers to a system by which a society ranks categories of people in a
Persons of color such as individuals of African descent are viewed as lower to individuals
of British or European descent. This was instilled into society during days of colonialism
when persons of the latter descent were in power.
Due to this, in historical times the Africans got the low lying jobs while the Europeans
got jobs of a better caliba, this showed that pigmentocracy was a big issue back then.
This type of discrimination is still prevalent in society today especially in the workplace.
Discrimination may rare its ugly head in many different forms such as harassment and
physical altercations due to a persons religion, race, and language which will result in
both physical and mental distress. Individuals can also be denied jobs and promotion
opportunities due to their ethnicity.
This would result in a less productive workforce as persons who are qualified are not
hired for a job or persons already employed are put into a poor frame of mind due to the
discrimination faced.
This will ultimately lead to a decrease in the standard of living in society as the amount
of goods and services produced will be limited which will have adverse effects on the
countrys development as there is reduced revenue gained to do so.

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Ethnic discrimination can also hinder development in terms of culture in the Caribbean.
Roman Catholic being the dominant culture in the Caribbean. Discriminating against
ethnic groups can limit the number of Hindus and Islam in the country.
Due to the fact that Indians and Africans had to change their religion to Roman Catholics
in order to obtain some form of education.
The culture in the Caribbean would be limited and have less mixing of cultures and
festivals celebrated by everyone.
Children growing up would only have experience and education of few cultures and
would adopt the same morals and values has everyone else. Hence, it wouldn't have
The Caribbean then wouldn't have a unique festival or culture that properly identifies the
countries. This would in term reduce income from tourism at times of these festivals.


Ethnic discrimination and sexual orientation has limited the potential to acquire
development by restraining the amount of educated and skilled individuals needed for the
Caribbean to have development occurring, due to discrimination in the workplace.
Social stratification plays a major role in preventing development in the Caribbean since
people in the lower strata of the hierarchy experience unfair treatment compared to
people belonging to a higher strata.
Ethnic discrimination with regards to ones cultural background limits development since
there is less mixing of cultures, and hence no diversification.