International Garifuna Conference moves into its second day
From Left: Dr Frederico Lenzerini, Dr Amy Strecker and Dr Garrey Dennie
Press Release
March 10, 2023

International Garifuna Conference moves into its second day

The 10th International Garifuna Conference which got going yesterday, March 9 at the conference room of the National Insurance Services moves into its second day today, March 10.

The three-day conference is organised by the Garifuna Heritage Foundation (TGHF) in collaboration with The University of the West Indies Open Campus (UWIOC), under the theme, “From Reaction to Action: Challenges and Opportunities for promoting Reparatory Justice for indigenous Peoples.

March 9 marks a significant day for the Garifuna People. It was on this date in 1797 that a fleet of ships sailed from St. Vincent to Roatan in Central America which is part of present-day Honduras, carrying 2,336 persons who had been kept as prisoners of war on Balliceaux, part of a background paper outlined.

A total of 2026 survived the journey. This group of persons formed the beginning of the exile of the Garifuna people in present-day Belize, Honduras, Nicaragua, Guatemala and the USA.

The three day conference opened with a keynote address delivered by Dr Frederico Lenzerini, a professor of Public International Law, European Union Law and International Human Rights Law at the Department of Law of the University of Siena, Italy. Today two further keynote addresses will be delivered. The first will be done by Dr Amy Strecker, an associate professor at the Sutherland School of Law University College, Dublin, Ireland. The second keynote address will be delivered by Vincentian, Dr Garrey Dennie, an associate professor of History at St Mary’s College of Maryland, USA. A panel of speakers will also be presenting on the topic “Elements of Reparatory Justice for Indigenous People in the Caribbean”. Other keynote addresses will be delivered on Saturday, the final day of the conference, with Prime Minister, Dr Ralph Gonsalves slated to present the closing keynote. Presentations from overseas delegates will also be an important aspect of the final day of conference activities.