Sen. Risa Hontiveros pushed for the passage of a sexual orientation, gender identity and expression equality bill in a speech at the Senate on Wednesday.
Senate PRIB/Albert Calvelo
Hontiveros appeals to Senate to pass SOGIE bill amid Cubao discrimination incident
(Philstar.com) - August 14, 2019 - 5:24pm

MANILA, Philippines — Sen. Risa Hontiveros appealed to her colleagues in the Senate to support the passage of the sexual orientation, gender identity and expression (SOGIE) bill after a discrimination incident against a transgender woman in Cubao Tuesday night.

In a speech delivered at the Senate plenary, Hontiveros narrated the experience of Gretchen Custodio Diez, who was handcuffed and brought to Camp Caringal after being blocked from using the women's restroom at Farmers Market in Cubao.

"Una, babae siya. A transwoman is a woman. Pangalawa, pang-araw-araw na karanasan ng mga LGBTQ at lalong-lalo na ang mga transwomen ang pangha-harass, pangungutya at pang-aabuso sa CR panlalaki," Hontiveros said.

The senator stressed that there is a grave and urgent need for a SOGIE equality bill.

Sen. Imee Marcos and Sen. Bong Go immediately manifested their support for the SOGIE equality bill following Hontiveros' speech.

Go said Rep. Geraldine Roman (Bataan) had approached him months ago to seek help in passing the proposed measure.

"We are all equal under the law and it is our duty in this institution to ensure that all Filipinos, regardless of their age, sex, religion, ethnicity or gender orientation are treated equally and justly," Go said.

Following the incident in Cubao, Quezon City Mayor Joy Belmonte slammed the management of the mall for banning Diez in the women's restroom.

"We assure the members of the LGBT community that Quezon City will always protect their rights and be a home for their sexual orientation, gender identity and expression. We do not support any kind of violence and discrimination in ourt city," Belmonte said in a statement.

Quezon City has a Gender Fair Ordinance that penalizes discrimination against members of the LGBT community. — Patricia Lourdes Viray

LGBT RIGHTS RISA HONTIVEROS SENATE SOGIE BILL
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