HRDs in Jamaica face challenges due to their lack of respect from government institutions, notably the police. Failure to investigate or investigate attacks or threats against HRDs is a common tactic by police who often see HRDs as provocoteurs.
Human rights defenders who are particularly at risk of violations are those who campaign for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights (LGBT). Homophobia in Jamaican society is rampant and with increasing documented patterns of homophobic violence, human rights defenders are forced to work clandestinely due to increasing mob attacks on the LBGT community and police harassment. Lesbians, gay men and HIV-positive individuals, as well as human rights defenders campaigning for their rights, face verbal and physical harassment (ranging from death threats to brutal assault and murder), denial of access to services (health services and even transportation) and stigmatisation. There is hostility on behalf of the government and an unwillingness to address the issue of violence against the LGBT community.